Farm Animal Welfare Council


Summary of council meeting on 26 February 2004

Chairwoman's Report
Reports from the Working Group
Other matters

Next meeting

This is the summary report of the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) plenary meeting on 26 February 2004, chaired by Dr Judy MacArthur Clark. The Council meets three times a year. Working groups that convene more frequently undertake much of the preparatory work.

The meeting welcomed new members Ruth Layton, Prof. David Morton, Rev. Prof. Michael Reiss and Meryl Ward.

Discussion centred around the implementation of Defra’s Animal Health and Welfare Strategy, approval of a report on the welfare implication of animal breeding and breeding technologies in commercial agriculture, the draft report on animal welfare in markets and at other animal gatherings, and a House of Commons Environment Food and Rural Affairs Committee Inquiry into Vets and Veterinary Services.

Chairwoman's Report

The Chairwoman was to meet with Ministers from the devolved administrations, to provide them with an overview of FAWC’s work and in particular to discuss the red meat slaughter report and the Animal Health and Welfare Strategy for the UK.

The Chairwoman proposed a new method of responding to consultations. Members would indicate their interest in a wide variety of animal welfare subjects to the Secretariat, which would then select a small group of members to initially target with each consultation received. All members would be made aware of the consultation and were free to add comments if they wished.

The Chairwoman had attended the OIE Conference in Paris where animal welfare had been a central issue. It was encouraging that animal welfare was reaching a global stage.

Reports from the Working Groups

As is customary the meeting heard progress reports from the Chairs of the Working Groups.

Strategy and Communication – Current priority was a redesign of the annual review to freshen its appeal and drafting had begun on stockmanship standards.

Poultry Issues – Focus maintained on broiler leg health and on broiler stocking density.

Farm Assurance Schemes – A draft report was now in production, which would include consideration of organic systems.

Slaughter – The Group had now changed focus towards welfare at slaughter of white meat species, beginning with a wide consultation. Initial meetings with Research Institutes and visits to processors had begun.

Research and Development – The Group was finalising its report on the welfare implications of animal breeding and breeding technologies. It had also held meetings with experts on the issue of lamb castration with a view to updating comments made in the Report on the Welfare of Sheep in 1994.

Markets and Transport – The Group was now concentrating on drafting its report but did keep a watching brief on transport issues.

Date of next meeting

10 June 2004

Further Information


Richard Aram
Assistant Secretary FAWC
Area 511, 1A Page Street

Tel: +44 (0)20 7904 6532
Fax: +44 (0)20 7904 6993

Last modified 26 April, 2005
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