Anneliese Dodds MEP

The South East's Voice in Europe

Report to LAWS Annual Conference 2017

I was very pleased to see the introduction of the new EU Platform on Animal Welfare. The new Platform enshrines the exchange of information and best practice, and actively encourages the direct involvement of stakeholders for animal welfare. There will also be an enhanced dialogue on a range of animal welfare issues relevant at EU level among a range of competent authorities, businesses, civil society and scientists. However the Platform is incomplete as it does not include any stipulation to protect the welfare of companion animals. Many issues affecting companion animals would benefit from transnational legislation, and would also benefit from joined-up discussions involving the European Commission, the European Parliament and Member States, including agencies, and border and veterinary authorities. I have therefore actively been supporting the EU Dog and Cat Alliance’s campaign calling for the adequate coverage and protection of companion animals in the new EU Platform on Animal Welfare. 

Calling for the inclusion of welfare companion animals in the new EU Platform on Animal Welfare

I was very pleased to see the introduction of the new EU Platform on Animal Welfare. The new Platform enshrines the exchange of information and best practice, and actively encourages...

The Common Agricultural Policy has been widely criticised for its failure to deliver on animal welfare, and has reportedly exacerbated some animal welfare issues. Amongst other issues, the CAP has incentivised intensive livestock farming, providing subsides that encourage livestock production per animal. This has also encouraged the overproduction of livestock, which has huge environmental implications. In light of these concerns, I have supported calls to the Commission President Juncker and Vice President Timmermans to review and assess the Common Agricultural Policy through a so-called ‘Fitness Check’, including with a view to animal welfare concerns (as well as environmental impacts). 

CAP and animal welfare

The Common Agricultural Policy has been widely criticised for its failure to deliver on animal welfare, and has reportedly exacerbated some animal welfare issues. Amongst other issues, the CAP has...

The exportation of live EU animals to the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey is an all-too-often occurrence. Statistics from Compassion in World Farming reveal that annually, over three million animals are exported from the European Union to non-EU countries. Aside from these journeys being unnecessarily long and arduous and thus breaking EC Regulation 1/2005, animals also leave behind all legal protections they had once been entitled to.

This is all the more concerning as the exportation of live EU animals appears to be a growing industry. The European Commission has revealed in its publication ‘Short-Term Outlook for EU arable crops, dairy and meat markets’ that in the first eight months of 2015, there was a 59% increase in cattle exports to the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey. The report also predicted a further increase in the live trade of these animals in 2016.

This is completely unacceptable, and I have written to the relevant Commissioner to challenge the breaches of Regulation 1/2005 when transporting livestock to the Middle East, North Africa, and Turkey. I will continue to campaign against the inhumane live transport of animals, whether from the EU to third countries or within the EU, not least given the appalling examples of maltreatment that exist even within my own constituency. 

Challenging the increase in the export of live EU animals to the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey

The exportation of live EU animals to the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey is an all-too-often occurrence. Statistics from Compassion in World Farming reveal that annually, over three million...

Making rabbit farming less cruel

Rabbits are the second most farmed livestock species in the European Union, farmed mainly for their meat and for their fur. Despite this, there is not yet any specific EU legislation on minimum standards for the protection of farm rabbits. Most farmed rabbits will be kept caged in barren environments, and in some instances, will be caged together with little to no space to move. These cages inhibit the rabbits’ ability to use their basic motor skills, leaves them unable to sit up with their ears erect, and may contribute to giving the rabbit bone conditions.

This lack of regulation seems peculiar given that there are EU regulations are in place to provide minimum standards for the protection of pigs, calves, laying hens, broiler chickens, and the general Council Directive for the protection of animals kept for farming purposes.

It is clear that many of my constituents also share my concerns about the living conditions of farmed rabbits. At the last count, I have received over 10,000 emails from concerned constituents relating to the conditions suffered by farmed rabbits.  

I have therefore supported a so-called ‘own initiative’ report from the Agricultural Committee on minimum standards for the protection of farmed rabbits, and hope that my fellow MEPs will agree with me next week when this is voted on in the plenary of the Parliament. 

Making rabbit farming less cruel

Making rabbit farming less cruel Rabbits are the second most farmed livestock species in the European Union, farmed mainly for their meat and for their fur. Despite this, there is...

TTIP and Animal welfare

Animal welfare is one of many issues where Labour MEPs have raised concerns about TTIP. Alongside my Labour MEP colleagues, Dame Glenis Willmott and Jude Kirton-Darling, I tabled(?) several written questions on the potential impact of TTIP on animal welfare. These concerned whether the European Commission could confirm that TTIP represents no threat to the bans on the marketing of animal-tested cosmetic products and ingredients and on the testing of cosmetic products and ingredients on animals within Regulation No (EU) 1223/2009, and that the EU will not countenance any removal or dilution of these provisions in the negotiations; whether the Commission could confirm that TTIP represents no threat to other existing EU legislation (and other measures) for the protection of animals, and that the EU will not countenance any removal or dilution of these provisions in the negotiations; and finally, whether it could  confirm that the EU will ensure that TTIP does not prevent it from retaining the freedom to legislate in the future for enhanced animal protection, including in a manner that prohibits or restricts trade with the US, where it believes that this reflects the wishes of EU citizens. The (relatively encouraging) response from the relevant Commissioner Andriukaitis can be viewed here:

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getAllAnswers.do?reference=E-2016-005717&language=EN

TTIP and Animal welfare

TTIP and Animal welfare Animal welfare is one of many issues where Labour MEPs have raised concerns about TTIP. Alongside my Labour MEP colleagues, Dame Glenis Willmott and Jude Kirton-Darling,...

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