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Planting the Animal Welfare seed in the EU-India Trade Relations

Trade & Animal Welfare
Brochure

In May 2021, the EU and India announced the relaunch of negotiations for a free trade agreement. The possibility of such an agreement has been discussed for almost 15 years, but the inclusion of provisions on trade and sustainable development (TSD) has remained a key stumbling block. The first round of
negotiations should take place in June 2022.

Eurogroup for Animals and the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO) call for the EU-India trade talks to include a strong animal welfare dimension when they restart, and on the EU and India to use existing political channels to set up cooperation on animal welfare in the meantime.

Protection of the Environment Through Criminal Law (2008/99/EC)

Wildlife
Position Paper

The European Commission published its proposal for the revision of the Environmental Crime Directive (2008/99/EC). Despite clear improvements, Eurogroup for Animals calls for a more ambitious framework. This proposal remains insufficient for Member States to ensure the prosecution of all wildlife-related offences, provide adequate penalties and address the proper care of confiscated animals.

We call on the Members of the European Parliament and Member States to consider and support the proposals detailed in this Position Paper, responding to European citizens’ concerns and the alarming need to protect wild animals and the wider biodiversity.

Trade in animal products fuels deforestation

Trade & Animal Welfare
Policy Briefing

On 17 November 2021, the European Commission put forward a legislative proposal on deforestation-free products. The proposed regulation would introduce specific due diligence requirements for companies placing certain products on the EU market - such as palm oil, wood, cocoa, coffee, beef, leather, and soy - that contribute to the destruction of forests.

The proposal could be a game changer for farm animals and for wild animals as it would be a powerful incentive for producers intending to export to the EU to switch to sustainable production systems, avoiding intensive agricultural systems which are not only detrimental to farm animals but also fuels deforestation, thereby destroying wild animals’ habitats.

However, as it stands, the proposal ignores the role played by the livestock industry beyond beef - especially the poultry, pig, dairy and farmed fish production industries - in the destruction of ecosystems such as forests, savannahs and wetlands. The proposal falls short to meet the objective of stopping deforestation driven by the EU’s consumption of animal products.

Annual Report 2021

Political Advocacy
Annual Report

2021 has been an extraordinary year, both in terms of the challenges it has posed and the wealth of opportunities to advance our work for animal protection in Europe and beyond.

Dive into our Annual Report 2021 and discover the highlights of the year and the major advances for animals:

- The European Commission promised to phase out caged farming for animals following the successful 'End the Cage Age' European Citizens Initiative.

- The 'No Animal Left Behind' campaign closed with almost 200,000 supporters standing up for a better future for all farm animals in Europe.

- The European Parliament voted in favour of a comprehensive plan to phase-out experiments on animals.

- 1 million citizens asked the European Commission to ban the use of wild animals in circuses.

- The EU Parliament adopted an ambitious report on the EU Biodiversity Strategy.

- During a Council meeting in June 2021, twelve Member States called on the European Commission to investigate the possibility for an EU ban on fur farming based on animal welfare, public health and ethical considerations.

- And much more!

Animal welfare during transport

Farm Animals
Position Paper

In 2019 over 1,600,000,000 farm animals (ovines, bovines, poultry, and pigs) were transported alive across the European Union and to non-European countries. Live transport is a major concern as animals are exposed to stress at loading and unloading, and can suffer hunger, thirst, exhaustion, and lack of space and rest during transit. Transporting live animals also poses serious risks for animals and, potentially, public health due to the possible spread of diseases.

Eurogroup for Animals calls for systemic changes to make sure that animals will not be unnecessarily transported within the EU and they will never leave the Union alive.

The Hens' Asks

Farm Animals
Guidelines

The Hens’ Asks has been developed by Eurogroup for Animals and its member organisations to define high welfare standards for laying hens in Europe. It addresses key welfare issues at different stages of the laying hens’ life (parent flock, pullets, laying hens, catching, transport and slaughter).

Companies can sign up to the Hens’ Asks, specifying the scope of their commitment in terms of geographical perimeter (national vs regional), product range (company vs brand level) and egg category (shell eggs, egg products, egg ingredients) covered. By signing up to the Hens’ Asks, a company commits to meet all the requirements listed below by 2027 for 100% of its sourcing for the specified perimeter.

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Bye Bye Cages

Trade & Animal Welfare
Report

This legal opinion has been commissioned by Compassion in World Farming and Eurogroup for Animals from Clémentine Baldon, lawyer at the Paris Bar, in the context of the discussions surrounding the follow up that will be given by the European Commission to the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) “End the Cage Age”.

The main conclusion is that a prohibition on the placing on the EU market of meat and eggs produced from caged animals, regardless of their origin, is likely to be found compatible with WTO rules.

This analysis looks into all stages of the tests that the measure would go through, if challenged by other WTO partners.

Joint statement: Enabling dietary shifts to curb environmental destruction and prevent the next pandemic

Political Advocacy
Letter

Representatives of 193 UN member states will meet at the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) to discuss policies to address the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. Unfortunately, food systems aren’t a focus, this time, even though farming and the eating of animals is a leading contributor to the global climate crisis. We signed ProVeg's joint letter to UNEA President Espen Barthe Eide and UN Environment Programme Executive Director Inger Andersen asking them to take a stronger lead in promoting less resource-intensive diets together with 154 other NGOs.

Companion animals in the fight against gender-based violence towards women and domestic violence

Cats & Dogs
Policy Briefing

The EU has to date not introduced any legal instrument to tackle gender-based violence and more general domestic violence. Following a fitness check conducted to analyse how current EU legislation impact violence against women and domestic violence, the European Commission will introduce a legislative proposal to combat violence against women and domestic violence, in line with the EU Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2025. There is a clear correlation between domestic violence and violence against companion animals. We are calling for the EU to include provisions related to companion animals to protect all victims of domestic violence, including women, children and animals.

Open letter regarding the Plenary vote on the AGRI implementation report on on-farm animal welfare

Farm Animals
Letter

On Monday 14th February the Parliament is due to vote on the AGRI implementation report on on-farm animal welfare by the rapporteur Jérémy Decerle MEP (RE, FR).

Eurogroup for Animals, Compassion in World Farming and Four Paws regret that this report has not fulfilled its primary purpose to provide comprehensive conclusions on the implementation of selected farm animal welfare related EU legislation. It presents a text that is full with positions from a bygone age.

It ignores much of the scientific knowledge gained in regards to the welfare of animals over recent years, pays little or no attention to the many problems inherent in the current farming systems — especially intensive animal production — falls much below citizens’ expectations and sidesteps the very scope of the mandate for this report: the implementation of EU legislation concerning the welfare of animals on farms.

Cultivated meat FAQs: a guide for further discussion

Farm Animals
Report

This document gives an overview of answers to the most frequent questions or concerns about cultivated meat. Since its technological development is an ongoing process and the insights of its impact are still growing, this overview should be considered as a living document.

Animal welfare in the implementation of the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement

Trade & Animal Welfare
Position Paper

The report describes the areas that would be the more promising for EU-Japan animal welfare cooperation either because of the EU imports (cattle, hens and pigs), or because the sectors are key in Japan and therefore any improvement to animal welfare could have a significant impact on animals and on the sustainability of food productions (laying hens and broiler chickens), and lastly because the EU exports live animals who end up being farmed in these sectors in Japan (horses).

European Parliament recommendation in relation to the protection of animals during transport

Farm Animals
Report

On 20 January 2022, the European Parliament adopted the Recommendation which had previously been approved by the Committee of Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport (ANIT) on 2nd December 2021. Eurogroup for Animals believes that the already weak Recommendation approved by the ANIT Committee was watered down further in Plenary. The amendments that could have had considerable positive impact on the welfare of the animals transported, as well as those supporting a systemic change, did not receive the support needed and expected.

African Swine Fever

Wildlife
Position Paper

The use of massive hunting of wild boar populations as a main approach to limit further spread of African Swine Fever (ASF) is considered inhumane and inefficient by Eurogroup for Animals. To successfully curb the spread of this disease, an unbiased, science-based approach and innovative solutions are needed. Research demonstrates that the focus must be on prevention and the strict application of biosecurity measures - benefiting animals, people and biodiversity.

Committee of Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport - Report and Recommendations

Farm Animals
Report

After nearly two years of work, the Committee of Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport (ANIT) voted on the drafted Report and Recommendations back in December 2021.

The Committee was meant to investigate alleged contraventions and maladministration in the application of Union law in relation to the protection of animals during transport (Council Regulation EC 1/2005) within and outside the Union. To this end, it organised three fact finding missions, ten public hearings, 14 individual hearings and several coordination meetings.

The so-called ANIT is the fourth inquiry approved in the history of the European Parliament and the very first one on animal welfare.

Live transport, far from being a concern only from an animal welfare perspective, is also relevant from a public health and environmental standpoints: as highlighted by the Committee, this activity represents a major risk factor in the spread of infectious animal diseases in the EU, and a source of environmental pollution, especially in relation to the violation of the MARPOL convention.

Measure to prevent and contain outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in domestic poultry

Farm Animals
Position Paper

Avian Influenza (HPAI) is a disease caused by influenza type A viruses that mainly infect wild birds, domestic birds and poultry. Certain highly-pathogenic viruses can cause very high mortality rates, mainly in chickens and turkeys.

This Position Paper presents some measures to prevent and contain outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza in domestic poultry.

The sustainability of EU investments in the Chinese livestock sector - The role of Animal Welfare

Trade & Animal Welfare
Report

Although European investors have had a presence in China’s livestock industry, to varying degrees, for decades, in recent years barriers to entry have begun to fall. The Chinese government intends to expand domestic production and reduce dependency on imports and has made it easier for foreign companies to invest. The new Chinese legislation on foreign investment (FIL) has encouraged a fresh wave of investment from European banks, finance companies and sovereign wealth funds. In 2020 the EU and China also concluded a Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI), although the ratification of the Agreement is currently on hold.

Decapod Crustaceans and Cephalopod Molluscs in EU Animal Welfare Legislation

Fish Welfare
Policy Briefing

The sentience of decapod crustaceans and cephalopod molluscs and their ability to feel pain is well established and widely recognised. Wild capture and farming of these animals for food is going on without welfare standards. There is an urgent need to establish science based standards for the transport, slaughter and farming of decapod crustaceans, and for the prohibition of the farming of cephalopod molluscs before the sector emerges.

A Europe that Cares for Animals: Hear Their Voice

Political Advocacy
Brochure

Eurogroup for Animals provides a voice for the billions of animals kept in laboratories, farms and homes, and for those living in the wild. We drive positive change by working with our members to identify common goals and coordinate EU-wide action to influence laws and policies that offer higher standards of animal protection. Learn more about the organisation in this introductory brochure.

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Briefing: Chile. Animal Protection in EU Trade Negotiations

Trade & Animal Welfare
Report

This report will examine what is at stake for animals in the EU-Chile trade negotiations, calling for the talks to include a strong animal welfare dimension. We look at the state of play of livestock production in Chile, of trade flows in animal products between both partners, as well as describing existing Chilean animal welfare legislation. We focus on key sectors where the EU has good reasons to strive to establish animal welfare cooperation and apply conditional liberalisation with Chile – either because the EU imports some of these products or because Chile is a key global producer.

Protecting Animals to Protect the Planet

Farm Animals
Brochure

Animal protection has been for too long absent from the conversations on climate change. Yet, animals and animal-related sectors play a significant role in ensuring a transition towards climate-resilient societies. Intensive livestock farming represents a significant share of the planet’s emissions that cannot be ignored.

No Animal Left Behind: The need for a new Kept Animals Regulation

Farm Animals
White Paper

The European Commission has an opportunity to deliver, in line with its ambitions contained in the Farm to Fork strategy, a future-proofed legal foundation for standards — evidence-based standards that provide the ability for all farmed animals to experience a positively affected mental state, thereby enabling them to lead lives that are truly worth living. Any farming practices that cannot meet such requirements should, in effect, be eliminated. Many animals such as fish, beef cattle, turkeys, rabbits, quails, sheep, and goats are neglected by current legislation and require species-specific welfare rules. In doing so, Europe would remain a world leader in animal welfare standards, citizens expectations would be met, and no animal would be left behind.

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No Animal Left Behind Report

Farm Animals
Report

With the knowledge that the animals we farm are sentient beings, comes the responsibility to provide them
with a good level of welfare. Many animals across the European Union are suffering due to inadequacies
and omissions in the current EU Directives, and a failure to enforce them. This report seeks to highlight key examples of where the current EU Directives (General Farming; 2007/43/EC, Broilers; 2008/120/EC, Pigs; 2008/119/EC and Layers; 1999/74/EC) are failing farmed animals in the EU.