European Parli­ament votes in favour of historic reso­lution dealing with the suffering of chickens in poultry industry

19 November 2018

The European Parliament wants to improve the welfare of broiler chickens. Last week, a proposal by the Party for the Animals to combat the suffering of broiler chickens was almost unanimously supported.

The adopted proposal wants to use healthier and slower-growing chickens. Furthermore, the Parliament is concerned about the high stocking density in farms: a poultry farm often contains tens of thousands of chickens and the floor space provided for each animal is less than the size of a sheet of paper. This has to change.

“95 percent of all chickens in Europe are broiler chickens that are slaughtered before the age of five weeks. In those five weeks, they are fattened, they develop leg problems making it impossible for them to stand, and they live in a farm with tens of thousands of other birds, never seeing the daylight. A vast majority of the Parliament is now pleading for natural light, clean air and more floor space, and they have given the European Commission a clear mandate to drastically improve the welfare of broiler chickens,” said Hazekamp.

The European Parliament also demands stricter requirements concerning poultry from outside the European Union. Countries like Brazil, Thailand and Ukraine are exporting large quantities of chicken to the EU. Hazekamp: “In countries like these, the living conditions of animals in factory farms are often even worse than in the EU. If we really want to fight animal suffering, we will have to put much higher demands on our imported chicken. If we don’t, the animal suffering will merely be relocated.”

The resolution, which was adopted in full, can be found here.