On 7th July 2017, at the conference ‘The CAP: Have Your Say’ in Brussels, members of civil society, industry and decision-makers gathered to discuss the future of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). FOUR PAWS and Eurogroup for Animals represented the voice of animal welfare advocates, underlining the need to ensure that animal welfare was included in the discussions.
Phil Hogan, EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, presented the results of the public consultation based on over 322,000 contributions from all EU Member States. The views of EU citizens and stakeholders were gathered to identify the challenges and the priorities for the future CAP at the EU level. According to the results, animal welfare constitutes a major challenge. Although Commissioner Hogan expressed the need for “fresh money for fresh initiatives”, animal welfare was not mentioned throughout the conference.
"The results of the public consultation clearly reveal that citizens are highly concerned with animal welfare and the EU Commission should therefore include this element in its decision-making. The intensive husbandry system should be adapted and include more sustainability and animal welfare standards."
Pierre Sultana, Director of the FOUR PAWS European Policy Office
"Today’s CAP has been successful in sustaining European agriculture, but has, along with global trends and competition within the agricultural market, encouraged the intensification of animal production at the expense of animal welfare. With this recent public consultation, citizens and organisations across Europe have expressed the need for a future CAP to deliver its objective of promoting animal welfare. The Commission should take stock of public opinion to re-think the current CAP system that significantly improves animal welfare."
Reineke Hameleers, Director of Eurogroup for Animals
FOUR PAWS insists on the urgent necessity and importance of maintaining good husbandry. Animal welfare practices need to benefit both animals and farmers. In this respect, the EU Commission needs to recognise this and include improved animal welfare standards in the CAP, as this concern has clearly been displayed through the results of the public consultation.
FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them. Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. FOUR PAWS’ sustainable campaigns and projects focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, farm animals and wild animals – such as bears, big cats, orangutans and elephants – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones. With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in twelve countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. www.four-paws.org