The current reform of the Common Agriculture Policy is an opportunity for the European Commission to translate its stated commitment to improve animal welfare into real policy decisions. The CAP should include measures which would make a difference for the majority of farm animals raised in very intensive systems such as pigs and poultry, both through direct payment and rural development.

The European Commission published its proposals on 12 October 2011, which were also presented in the European Parliament by EU Farm Commissioner Dacian Cioloş on the same day.

In its report on the Commission communication for a future CAP, adopted on 23 June 2011 European Parliament “Believes that animal-welfare-friendly methods of production also have a positive impact on animal health, food quality and food safety while being more friendly for the environment;” It also calls for a strong rural development part of the CAP, with enough funding.

The CAP provides for refunds to be given to live cattle exports to third countries, promoting the long distance transport of live animals with the attached negative impact on their welfare, as shown in the European Commission annual reports on the recovery of export refunds on animal welfare grounds (see link below for the report and go to the transport section for more information on the issue of live animal transport).

For more information on this issue, please visit:

Written questions:

Sustainable grassland management to protect our climate by Franz Obermayr (NI)
Factory farming by John Bufton (EFD)
Animal welfare as a condition for payment of agricultural aid by Anna Rosbach (EFD)

Other links:

European Parliament Report on the Commission Communication: The CAP towards 2020: Meeting the food, natural resources and territorial challenges of the future

DG Agriculture and Rural Development: The Common Agricultural Policy after 2013

Presentation of proposals to the European Parliament’s Agriculture Committee by Dacian Ciolos on 12 October

Report on the recovery of Export Refunds for live bovine animals 2010


Comments are closed.