We take responsibility for food of animal origin. In principle, however, we also believe that the excessive consumption of meat must be reduced. If we eat meat, it should definitely be organic meat.
okoland sausage and ham, chicken fricassee and paella therefore have two things in common: they are delicious, and they have animal ingredients from organic and species-appropriate animal husbandry. Yes, we slaughter – but we don’t shirk the responsibility that comes with it. We contribute to the well-being of the animals during their life and we produce high-quality food from their meat.
And we are convinced: meat products must not be junk goods.
Since 2000, long before this became a trend, we developed vegetarian soups and frozen meals. We are consistently pursuing this holistic approach.
Species-appropriate animal husbandry
How animals live and die in our company decides everything. And makes the difference to factory farming, which we reject. The quality of Animal husbandry according to strict organic criteria is a central element of our corporate responsibility. We are happy about everyone who shares this conviction.
Species- and animal-appropriate husbandry means that animals can act out their species-appropriate behavior, lie on straw and have access to fresh air. And this also includes wholesome feed, mainly produced on our own farm, as well as the selection of suitable breeds. In the case of fish from organic aquaculture, what convinces us above all is that far fewer animals are kept in water.
Completely taboo are for us performance enhancers such as concentrated feed based on genetically modified organisms as well as the preventive administration of antibiotics. Only in this way can a sustainable, ecological and economic cycle be created.
Even Transport and Slaughter We take special care to ensure that the animals experience as little stress as possible. The pigs of our contract farms, for example, are delivered directly to our slaughterhouse, a medium-sized family business. This slaughterhouse is QS-certified and, in addition to the organic requirements, also implements numerous voluntary animal welfare measures, compliance with which is checked annually as part of the organic inspection process. Organic animals are transported live a maximum of 200 kilometers, with the vast majority of suppliers located within a 100-kilometer radius.
Organic poultry farming
Because of their origin, turkeys have very different needs in terms of housing and living conditions. We do justice to these findings by appropriate stable and pasture concepts.
Turkeys originate from the steppe regions of South America and like to stay there at the edge of the forest and in the grassland. Large open-air runs at the barns meet this need – because especially at dawn and dusk, the turkeys are drawn far away from the barn to go exploring. At night, the animals are herded into the barn or they have access to grassland around the clock.
okoland purchases turkey and chicken meat exclusively from farms that are affiliated with an organic farming association. This ensures compliance with both the EU organic regulation and the stricter association guidelines.
Organic cattle farming
Cattle farming includes meat and milk production. The meat comes from cows, bulls, young cattle and steers. Mother cow husbandry as a form of cattle fattening is practiced extensively and close to nature. The animals are either on pasture all year round, depending on breed and robustness, or they spend the winter in a spacious loose housing with straw. The calves stay with their mothers for nine months and then continue to fatten up in groups in the barn or outside.
Organic cattle always have sufficient room to rest and move around, daylight in the barn and, above all, room to roam. They spend most of the summer grazing and eating grass. In winter in the stable, the animals are fed with sufficient roughage (hay and grass or corn silage). The concentrated feed consists, for example, of cereals, peas, field beans and lupins.
Organic pig farming
Domestic pigs, domesticated over thousands of years, have a great urge to move around, are clean and very inquisitive. The farmers who supply okoland with organic pigs therefore provide the animals with a generous outdoor area where they can experience rain, sun, wind and smells. Pigs can use straw for playing and rooting, and lying and defecation areas are separated in the barns. The majority of the area must consist of a closed floor area. The lying area must be soft, dry and clean and perforated partial slatted floors are only allowed in the manure area.
Organic pigs are offered "roughage" such as straw, hay or fresh grass, which is rich in fiber and provides a feeling of satiety. In addition, they receive concentrated feed z.B. from cereal meal and protein-rich legumes such as peas, beans, lupins or potato protein.
For a continuous and reliable supply of organic pork, we have concluded long-term supply and purchase agreements with regional organic farms. We have been working cooperatively with some of the farms for over 20 years. In long-standing cooperation with the Hanover Chamber of Agriculture, we also offer advice to the farms. In addition to the obligatory EU organic inspection, all these producers also undergo inspection in accordance with the stricter Bioland guidelines. We purchase the necessary cuts exclusively from long-standing organic partner farms in Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands.
More than organic! This motto accompanies us in our overall social commitment in the areas of social welfare, nature conservation and climate protection.
okoland has been on the path to more climate protection since 2008: we actively reduce CO2 emissions by purchasing green electricity, optimizing logistics, initiatives with our processing partners and voluntary support for climate protection projects in developing countries. Production, office operations, travel to work or field service – all this is organized in a climate-neutral way and has been controlled and certified according to the criteria of the "Stop Climate Change Standard" since 2007.
Our office building, which we moved into in 2010, is heated by a highly efficient, small gas-fired combined heat and power plant that also generates electricity for the building. On the roof solar collectors provide for power generation. And since 2013, such a system has also adorned the roof of our butcher shop. As a result, nearly 40 percent of electricity demand is generated directly. The remaining demand is met by certified green power. This means that around 360 tons of CO2 emissions can be avoided each year. Climate certificates are purchased to offset unavoidable emissions, supporting ecologically and socially beneficial climate protection projects. In recent years, for example, it has been used to fund energy-efficient stoves for families in various countries in Africa. The stoves use only a fraction of the firewood compared to traditional stoves, and leave far fewer fumes in families’ homes and cabins.
More information on certification and our currently supported climate protection project can be found directly at ClimatePartner: