PCAS Information

What is PCAS?

Increasingly, consumers are demanding proof that products have been produced as claimed and are becoming more sensitive to treatments applied to meat animals.

The Pasturefed Cattle Assurance System, or PCAS for short, is an assurance program that enables the industry to prove claims relating to pasturefed or grassfed production methods.

Underpinning PCAS are the PCAS Standards which govern the on-farm feed requirements and traceability of the cattle as well as pre-slaughter handling practices which influence eating quality. The PCAS Standards also include two optional modules to support claims relating to the freedom from antibiotics and hormone growth promotants (HGPs).

PCAS Standards

The PCAS Standards are the set of requirements that producers must meet in order to become Certified Pasturefed.

The PCAS Standards include three modules, one core module comprising four elements, and two optional modules. The core module governs the on-farm feed requirements and traceability of cattle, as well as animal handling practices which influence eating quality. The two optional modules support claims relating to freedom from HGPs and antibiotics.

The elements of the PCAS Standards are:

Producers can become Certified Pasturefed through completing a series of Steps.

PCAS Documents

Click here for PCAS related documents

PCAS Certification Process

The process to PCAS Certification requires a number of steps to be fulfilled and annual on-farm audit are needed to remain certified.

To become Certified Pasturefed and be eligible to use the suite of certification marks (the PCAS logo), you must:

  1. Register your PIC(s) on the PCAS website and pay the annual administration fee.
  2. Complete a pre-audit application form and submit it to AUS-MEAT who will than contact you with a quote and set a date for the audit.
  3. Prepare for the on-farm audit through ensuring that appropriate records are available. The PCAS Website has useful Guides and Templates to help you prepare.
  4. Conducted the on-farm audit and action any areas the auditor identifies as requiring improvements.
  5. You will then gain full PCAS Certification! Your Certification Body will issue you with a PCAS Certificate, valid for a year, and you will be given full access to the website, allowing you to download the PCAS Vendor Declaration and the PCAS Logos.
  6. To ensure your certification remains valid you will be required to conduct annual on-farm audits and pay an administration fee.

PCAS Suppliers

PCAS is certified to provide premiums to producers for supplying a niche market and address consumer demand for certified products. Consumers can have peace of mind that PCAS products are certified pasturefed and subject to strict rules and standards regarding the production systems the beef comes from.

A list of companies that are aligned with PCAS can be found on the following links. Producers can find wholesalers and approved supplement suppliers for their business and consumers can find out where they can buy certified pasturefed beef across Australia.

Audit Application

PCAS is a certification program and as such, producers are required to undertake independent annual on-site audits in order to retain certification.

AUS-MEAT is the PCAS approved auditing company and certifier for this program and can be contacted via the following:

Phone: 1800 621 903

Phone: (07) 3361 9200

Fax: (07) 3361 9222

Email: pcas.audits@ausmeat.com.au

Audit application can be accessed either via the website or by contacting AUS-MEAT. Producers can download the audit application form and send it to AUS-MEAT via email or fax.

Producers should make their own enquiries AUS-MEAT as to audit costs and the timing of audits in your area.


Vender Bred Cattle

PCAS Eligible Cattle

Under PCAS the general rule is that introduced cattle from non-certified properties are not eligible. The only exemption to this rule exist in relation to vendor bred cattle.

Cattle from non-certified properties can become PCAS certified provided that the following are fulfilled:

  • the cattle satisfy the Vendor Bred Cattle definition; and
  • a Non-Certified Supplier Declaration is completed

PCAS Vendor Bred Cattle Definition

Under PCAS a Vendor Bred animal is defined as cattle whose first sale is onto a Certified Pasturefed PIC or a property prior to Certification, that is less than 18 months old and has been raised in a manner that is consistent with the PCAS Standards from birth to sale.

The important requirements of this definition are:

  • That it must be the cattles first sale.
  • At the sale the cattle must be less than 18 months old; and
  • The cattle must have been Raised in a Manner Consistent with PCAS Standards

Non-Certified Supplier Declaration

Producers that purchase PCAS eligible vendor bred cattle need to get the vendor to complete a Non-Certified Supplier Declaration. This document allows for the breeder of the cattle to assure that there have not been any practices or treatments to the cattle, that are inconsistent with the PCAS Standards.