Andrew Gunther joined the Animal Welfare Approved program in April 2008 as program director. Previously, he was the senior global animal compassionate product procurement and development specialist for Whole Foods Market, leading the team that designed and launched the company's five-step welfare program in the United Kingdom. From a truly agricultural background, Andrew, with his wife and children, pioneered the world's first organic poultry hatchery for chickens. The Gunther family also managed the production for the largest independent organic chicken producer.
As Program Director for Animal Welfare Approved, Andrew has spearheaded the program’s unprecedented growth, increasing the number of approved farms tenfold, promoting farm viability for humane livestock farmers, and growing market strength. The Animal Welfare Approved standards have been rated “most stringent” by the World Society for the Protection of Animals. Andrew also works with restaurants groups and retailers to increase the availability of Animal Welfare Approved meat, dairy and eggs in traditional retail settings. Andrew is currently part of the Texas State Board of Agriculture's organic advisory board and a member of the American Association of Agricultural Scientists.