Travel rules to be reviewed in four years

by 5m Editor
24 November 2004, at 12:00am

UK - Europe's farming ministers have reached an agreement on new rules governing the welfare and long-distance transport of live animals. Earlier attempts to reach a deal on this dossier floundered in April with ministers unable to agree on how far maximum journey times should be cut.


National Pig Association

NPA is active on members' behalf in Brussels & Whitehall, and with processors, supermarkets & caterers - fighting for the growth and pros-perity of the UK pig industry.

But in a comprise text offered up by the Dutch EU presidency in September, changes to journey times were dropped, in return for a raft of less contentious commitments related to animal welfare during transport that were given the go-ahead by ministers yesterday, with the proviso that the whole question be looked at again in four years.

Permitted travelling times remain unchanged - pigs can be transported for 24 hours without a break, but with permanent access to water, and horses can travel for up to 24 hours, with water every eight hours. Young animals still on milk can be transported for 18 hours with a one hour break, and cattle, sheep and goats can be in transit for 29 hours with a one hour break.

The Agriculture Council reached political agreement by qualified majority on the basis of a compromise drawn up by the presidency, which the Commission could endorse. The Danish delegation indicated they would vote against while the Belgian, German, Luxembourg and Swedish delegations indicated their intention to abstain.

The Regulation will be adopted as an A-item by the Council at a forthcoming session. Most of the amendments adopted by the European Parliament and accepted by the Commission have been inserted in the regulation. Concerning the case of farmers transporting their own animals from farm to farm or for sale on a market, the administrative requirements will not be applied for this category of transporters transporting animals up to a maximum distance of 65 km (instead of 50 km) counted from the place of departure to the place of destination.

Source: National Pig Association - 23rd November 2004

5m Editor