The Parliamentary Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals is the one of the first-established and longest running Intergroups. Founded in 1983, the Intergroup has been going from strength to strength for well over 33 years. After many years, the Intergroup remains very active: it has discussed an incredible range of issues, but it is not just a place to talk, but also a catalyst for action.

Many European initiatives for the protection of animals have their roots in the discussions of the Intergroup. It is here that issues such as the clubbing of baby seals, the long-distance transport of live animals, the trapping of animals for fur and the confinement of calves in stalls were seriously debated for the first time at a European level.

Members of the Intergroup have been at the forefront of promoting new legislation, wielding influence beyond their power through force of argument and with the support of public opinion. Numerous petitions and tens of thousands of letters have demonstrated that for the average European, animal welfare is a serious issue.

Members of the Intergroup have witnessed at first hand some of the conditions which animals are forced to endure. They have gone as far as the Canadian ice-flows, to Africa and closer to home visiting factory farms and laboratories. During the lifetime of the Intergroup, the welfare and conservation of animals has moved from the political fringe to become a mainstream concern now reflected in the European Treaty.

There is a constant supply of new challenges, not only because of the scale of the problem and the need for international as well as domestic solutions, but also because the Parliament itself has grown and diversified.  The Intergroup intends to remain at the forefront of new initiatives, both by encouraging Parliamentary debate and scrutinising the performance of other EU institutions with animal protection responsibilities.


Presidents of the EP Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals


1st term : 1979-1984

2nd half


Stanley Johnson (EPP, UK)

Founder President of the Intergroup in 1983



2nd term : 1984-1989

1st half


Liesolotte Seibel-Emmerling (PSE, DE)

was a Vice Chairwoman of the CULT Committee



2nd half


Hanja Maij-Weggen (EPP,NL)

became a Dutch Minister of Transport, Public Works and Water Management 1989–1994



3rd term : 1989-1994

1st half


Madron Richard Seligman (EPP, UK)

was at the same time a Member of the ITRE Committee




2nd half


Anita Pollack (PSE, UK)

was a Member of the ENVI Committee




4th term : 1994-1999

1st half


Hanja Maij-Weggen (EPP, NL)

was a Member of the AFCO Committee



2nd half


Michael Elliott (PSE-UK)

was a Member of the LIBE Committee




5th term : 1999-2004

1st half


José María Gil-Robles y Gil-Delgado (EPP, ES)

was President of the European Parliament from 1997 to 1999



2nd half


Robert JE Evans (PSE, UK)

was a Member of the TRAN Committee




6th term : 2004-2009

1st half


Paulo Casaca (PSE,PT)

was at the same time Vice-Chairman of the COBU- Committee



2nd half


Neil Parish (EPP, UK)

Was at the same time the Chairman of the AGRI Committee.

Is currently the Chairman of the Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare in Westminster




7th term : 2009-2014

1st half


Caroline Lucas (Greens/EFA, UK)

Was President for 6 months but left the EP to become an MP in Westminster





Carl Schlyter (Greens/EFA, SE)

was at the same time a Vice-Chairman of the ENVI Committee



2nd half



Dan Jørgensen (S&D, DK)

Vice Chairman of the ENVI-Committee

left the EP three months before the end of the term to become the Danish Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries



Pavel Poc (S&D, CZ)

Vice-Chairman of the ENVI Committee Interim President of the Intergroup




8th term : 2014-2019

1st half

Janusz Wojciechowski (ECR, PL)

Vice Chairman of the AGRI-Committee

left the EP seven months before the end of his mandate as President of the Intergroup to become a Member of the European Court of Auditors




Sirpa Pietikänen (EPP, FI)




2nd half


Sirpa Pietikänen (EPP, FI)

former Finnish Minister for the Environment (1991-1995)


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