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Animal Welfare

Volume 79: debated on Monday 20 May 1985

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asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will introduce legislation to implement fully European Economic Community Directives 77/489 and 81/389.

[pursuant to her reply, 16 May 1985, c.205]:We have no plans to introduce further implementing legislation. I consider that our current legislation fulfils our obligations under these directives, and so protects the welfare of animals in international transit within our jurisdiction.

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food upon the basis of what scientific research was the limit of 24 hours for transportation of live animals determined.

[pursuant to her reply, 16 May 1985, c. 205]:The period prescribed in the Community directive for feeding and watering intervals was decided upon following expert international veterinary opinion. I also refer the hon. Member to the 1978 report by the agriculture departments on the export trade in live animals for slaughter or further fattening, which is available in the Library of the House, and which gives background to this question.

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will introduce legislation to define the appropriate intervals for the feeding of different species of animals.

[pursuant to her reply, 16 May 1985, c. 205]: The relevant Community directives do not prescribe intervals which are suitable for all journeys, since the need for feeding and watering depends on a number of factors such as age and sex of the animals, temperature, humidity, stocking density and length of the journey to the final destination.

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he is taking against exporters who make false declarations on the staging of animals during journeys to the Continent.

[pursuant to her reply, 16 May 1985, c. 205]: It would be an offence under Section 69 of the Animal Health Act 1981 if an applicant under the Export of Animals (Protection) Order 1981 made a false declaration for the purpose of obtaining an export licence. If there were evidence that an applicant had knowingly made such a declaration, prosecution would be considered.

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what response he has made to the European Economic Community Commission's request concerning the Government's initial response to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' complaint on the export of live food animals.

[pursuant to her reply, 16 May 1985, c. 205]: My right hon. Friend has written to Commissioner Andriessen offering to arrange discussions on any aspects of the society's complaint on which he considers that a meeting would be helpful.