HERNDON, Va. – Milagro Ranch, Carbondale, Colo., is now certified as a producer of Certified Humane Raised and Handled beef, announced Humane Farm Animal Care (H.F.A.C.). Operated by Felix and Sarah Tornare, Milagro Ranch raises grass-fed beef.

Described as “naturally lean”, this beef is raised and finished entirely on pasture. Benefits compared to grass-fed ranching include lower environmental impacts, no grain production and smaller, often family-run operations committed to sustainable ranching practices, according to a news release.

“For us, having a humane certification is the highest honor,” said owner Ms. Tornare. “It embodies everything we are all about and what we have been trying to do here at the ranch since we started. We wouldn't want to do it any other way.”

Top-tier restaurants in the Aspen, Carbondale area highlight Milagro Ranch beef on their menus, and the public can contact the Tornare’s directly for purchase.

H.F.A.C. is a leading non-profit certification organization improving the lives of farm animals in food production. The Certified Humane designation assures consumers that meat, poultry, egg or dairy products they purchase have been produced according to H.F.A.C.'s standards for humane farm animal treatment. Animals must receive a nutritious diet without antibiotics or hormones and must be raised with shelter, resting areas and space sufficient to support natural behavior.

Since the H.F.A.C. program was unveiled in May 2003, more than 60 companies, representing hundreds of farms and millions of farm animals, have been certified.

The Certified Humane Raised and Handled program, which is endorsed by more than 36 humane organizations, is nationally recognized as the Gold Standard for certifying animal welfare from birth through slaughter. H.F.A.C.’s Animal Care Standards were developed by a veritable “Who’s Who” of national and international animal scientists and farm-animal welfare experts. Producer compliance with the H.F.A.C. standards is verified through annual on-site visits by H.F.A.C.’s third-party inspectors.

Milagro Ranch beef is available at restaurants in and around the Aspen, Carbondale, Colo., area, and is listed for online purchase on the H.F.A.C. Web site, www.certifiedhumane.org.