EU ban on keeping animals in cages in sight: Party for the Animals calls on citizens to pressure the EU together

26 May 2021

Last Friday, the Committee on Agriculture of the European Parliament voted for a ban on keeping animals in cages in the food industry. Following the highly successful citizens’ initiative that was signed by 1.4 million people, the end of the ‘Cage Age’ is finally in sight. In the beginning of June, the entire European Parliament will vote on the matter, after which it will be up to the European Commission to issue legislation. The Dutch Party for the Animals calls on the parliament for a clear position and pushes for a quick phase-out of the cages.

In Europe, over 342 million animals are currently kept in cages in the livestock industry. Pigs, chickens, rabbits, ducks, geese, quails, and calves wear out their lives without any freedom of movement and without any possibilities to satisfy their natural needs. “The life of these animals is one big torment”, says Anja Hazekamp, MEP for the Party for the Animals. “The use of cages is outdated, cruel, and unnecessary.”

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MEP Anja Hazekamp of the Dutch Party for the Animals during the hearing in the European Parliament, held as a result of the citizens’ initiative ‘Stop the Cage Age’.

The fact that the European Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI) voted in favour of phasing out this cruel practice is something the Party for the Animals warmly welcomes. Ahead of the vote, the party submitted over fifty proposals to improve the concept resolution. A large share of these proposals were adopted. Thanks to the Party for the Animals, the text of the resolution now highlights the urgency and necessity of European legislation to ban cages. It also mentions the requirement that all animal products imported into the EU should meet European standards, including cage-free production methods. The amended resolution also acknowledges that the demand for cage-free, organic animal products and plant-based products is growing, and that there should be legal standards for the protection of rabbits.

The Party for the Animals pushes the European Commission to – contrary to what happed after previous citizens’ initiatives – truly commit to legislation. “If you take the European citizen seriously, you will propose legislation that bans keeping animals in cages throughout the entire EU”, spoke MEP Anja Hazekamp during the previous hearing in the European Parliament. Hazekamp trusts the commission to take action this time. “There is now a citizens’ initiative as well as a widely supported call for action from the European Parliament. It’s up to the European Commission to herald the end of the medieval cage system, and to free animals from their cages for good.”

Citizens of Europe: Speak up and help get rid of those cages!

To motivate the European Parliament to commit to a clear and powerful ban in no uncertain terms, the Party for the Animals and its sister parties throughout Europe call on citizens to write to their representatives in the EU. “Send an e-mail or message on social media to your representative before June 5th to let them know that now is the time to end keeping animals in cages!” People can easily find the contact details of their MEP’s on the website of the European Parliament, making it very simple to write them a friendly message.