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EU Parliament votes overwhelmingly to ban caged animal farming by 2027

The matter will now go to the EU Commission.

Image: Shutterstock/Patrick Poendl

THE EU PARLIAMENT HAS voted overwhelmingly in favour of banning the use of cages in animal agriculture by 2027. 

The matter will now go to the EU Commission, which has today responded positively to the vote and said it is committed to phase out and finally prohibit the use of cages for all the animal species and categories referred to in the initiative: laying hens, sows, calves, rabbits, pullets, quail, ducks and geese.

The European Citizens’ Initiative to End the Cage Age was signed by 1.4 million citizens across all EU member states and is the very first successful Initiative for farmed animals.

The announcement follows the European Parliament’s adoption earlier this month of a resolution calling on the Commission to phase out cages for farmed animals by 2027 and to ensure that all imported products into the EU comply with these cage-free standards.

Commenting on the landmark decision, Gerry Boland, founder of and spokesperson for Animals Behind Closed Doors praised the Commission for following through on the Citizens’ Initiative and the EU Parliament’s overwhelming vote to end the cage age.

About a half of the egg-laying chickens in the EU are raised in cages and the majority of female pigs spend at least part of their lives in a cage.

Cage farming is already banned in farming accredited as organic in the EU.

A public consultation will be launched in the first quarter of 2022 and an impact assessment will be finalised by the end of 2022.

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The impact assessment will constitute an important element since it will determine, in particular, the length of a reasonable transition period and the accompanying and supporting measures to facilitate the transition to no cages.

The approach will be species-to-species, meaning that it will take into account and assess characteristics of each different animal species or categories, which should have housing systems, suited to their specific needs. 

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