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Animal Welfare

Volume 170: debated on Thursday 19 April 1990

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20.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food when he last met the director of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals; and what was discussed.

I met the chief executive and other officers from the society on 27 March when many current issues on farm animal welfare were discussed.

23.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what reports he is expecting from the Farm Animal Welfare Council.

I refer the hon. Member to the reply that I gave earlier to the hon. Member for Pontypridd (Dr. Howells).

25.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he plans to bring forward any primary legislation on farm animal welfare.

57.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he plans to bring forward any primary legislation on farm animal welfare.

My right hon. Friend the Minister recently announced a major new initiative by the Government to tighten up farm animal welfare standards throughout the European Community. We intend to seek the fullest degree of harmonisation so that all countries of the Community operate to the same high standards. We shall seek to ensure that welfare measures which we consider to be desirable to introduce are, so far as possible, adopted throughout the European Community.The Government have already announced that primary legislation is required to implement a number of recommendations by the Farm Animal Welfare Council relating to the welfare of animals at slaughter. It remains our intention to introduce the legislation as soon as the parliamentary timetable permits to make provision for those measures which may not be covered by Community law.

38.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will make a statement on policy towards animal welfare within the United Kingdom and the European Community.

42.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps he is taking to ensure that the welfare of farm animals is given priority throughout the European Community.

As explained in the reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Hereford (Mr. Shepherd) on 7 February, Official Report, column 712, we are pressing for a comprehensive package of measures on farm animal welfare to be adopted in the Community in order to achieve the widest possible safeguards.

44.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will make a statement on the Farm Animal Welfare Council.

The Government value the Farm Animal Welfare Council's independent and authoritative advice very highly. The council has provided the impetus for many new welfare measures and will, I am sure, continue to lead the way in its future work.