We are delighted to inform you that earlier this week, the European Parliament approved of an extra 1,850,000 Euro to be invested in three pilot projects to tackle major animal welfare problems in Europe. This result came after an intense and coordinated lobby effort between Eurogroup for Animals and the European Parliament Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals.
One step closer to ending piglet castration (600,000 €)
The first project will aim to foster the establishment of a harmonised internal market for pig meat obtained from pigs that have not been surgically castrated. To do so, key stakeholders in the meat supply chain such as farmers, slaughterhouses, food processors and retailers will be encouraged to share and disseminate techniques and best practices that eliminate the need to castrate pigs surgically. In particular, the project will encourage knowledge transfer concerning
- reliable and viable boar taint detection methods;
- utilisation of boar tainted carcasses during processing;
- marketing and valorisation of meat from pigs that are not surgically castrated.
This successful adoption was possible thanks to the commitment of Jan Huitema MEP (ALDE, NL), Clara Eugenia Aguilera García (S&D, ES) and of the Members of the Animal Welfare Intergroup’s working group on pig welfare who all participated in promoting the initiative in relevant Committees and in the Political Groups.
Boosting the uptake of alternatives to animal testing (1,000,000 €)
Acknowledging that the current pace of phasing out animal testing is insufficient, this project will connect stakeholders more effectively through awareness raising actions, information and knowledge exchange, education programs and targeted training courses for the animal users. This project will give an extra push to the work already undertaken by the Education & Training Platform for Laboratory Animal Science (ETPLAS), an initiative strongly supported by the Commission, national governments, industry, research and the animal welfare community.
Preserve the welfare of large carnivores (250,000€)
The preservation of large carnivores is often facing resistance from land users while receiving support from a growing conservation-sensitive public. The conflicts this can generate has featured high in discussions during the evaluation of the EU’s emblematic NATURE Directive.
This pilot project will address these conflicts and herewith foster the welfare and conservation of large carnivores by bringing opposed stakeholders together in regional or local platforms of coexistence and helping them develop key joint welfare and preservation actions.
Jumping the last hurdles in the EU budgetary procedure
The pilot projects have still to undergo the remaining hurdles of the EU-budgetary procedure but the positive vote in the Committee on Budgets has allowed securing them for the further steps. The vote in plenary is scheduled for the 26th October and will be followed by the conciliation with the Council. The last step of the budgetary procedure will be the Parliament vote on the conciliation outcome during the November plenary session in Strasbourg. Eurogroup for Animals will continue its critical lobby, jointly with its parliamentary allies through the Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals.