Cage-free farming can support sustainable animal agriculture, new report finds


Cage-free farming can support sustainable animal agriculture, new report finds

16 October 2020
Ending the caging of animals, as part of a transformative change in animal agriculture, could make farming more sustainable and could bring better rural jobs, finds a new report by a sustainability think tank working on EU policy.

The new report was launched on 13 October 2020, in a webinar hosted by a group of Members of the European Parliament working on cage-free farming and organised by Eurogroup for Animals' member Compassion in World Farming (CIWF).

In the report, the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP) explored the environmental and societal benefits and trade-offs of ending the use of cages in the production of egg-laying hens, pigs and rabbits in the EU. If paired with ambitious actions on addressing overconsumption, reducing protein imports and implementing large-scale organic conversion of animal farming, a cage-free farming transition could trigger the much needed environmental and socio-economic transformation, finds the report.

The IEEP study was commissioned by Compassion in World Farming to provide an evidence-based assessment and inform EU policymakers ahead of a key decision on whether to end the use of cages in animal farming.

Earlier this month, the European Commission received a European Citizens’ Initiative signed by 1.4 million people across Europe calling for an end to the use of cages in EU farming. ‘End the Cage Age’ is only the sixth European Citizens’ Initiative to reach the required threshold of 1 million signatures since the first Initiative was launched over eight years ago. It is the very first successful Initiative for farmed animals. The Commission has six months to respond to this Initiative.