Dutch animal welfare organisations are beginning a campaign today against the transport of animals over long distances, which they believe, is not possible without suffering, according to Dutch newspaper, Agrarisch Dagblad.
The Dutch Society for the Protection of Animals (Dierenbescherming), Animals and Justice (Dier en Recht) and the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) are calling for an alternative to transportation – namely, slaughtering nearer to the farm.
An online petition is available from today, which will be forwarded to the European Commission.
Sandra Albers, director of WSPA in the Netherlands, believes that it is high time for change. “What animals go through during unnecessary transportation on a yearly basis, is unacceptable in the 21st Century. European rules are frequently not adhered to in practice and there are hardly any controls. Outside Europe, the situation is even worse.”
Every year, around 2 million pigs are transported from the Netherlands to Spain and Italy. Around 1.6m young pigs are sent abroad to be finished. In addition, pigs are transported from Germany to the Netherlands to be slaughtered, even when they were originally transported from the Netherlands to Germany as piglets.
The Dutch parliament (Tweede Kamer) has taken a worried stance in the last while in relation to livestock transport. In mid-March, the results of a study on the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (VWA), which controls transportation of animals among other things, is to reveal some shortcomings in the Authority’s working methods.
â€¢ Dierenbescherming (in Dutch)
â€¢ WSPA (in Dutch)