Shame on the Transport of Live Farm Animals
Public opinion in many western European countries is increasingly outraged by the proliferation of scandals which concern farm animals transport. There are regular reports about degrading treatment on animals on the hoof for slaughter. It is estimated that every year over 3.5 million animals are exported from the EU to non EU countries such as Russia, Turkey, the Middle-East and North-Africa. It is specifically in this context that more and more people condemn inhuman transport of live animals particularly to slaughterhouses: cramped conditions in trucks or ship holds with a lack of water and food and often with failed ventilation systems. This leads to animals suffering agonies and dying in transit. And we must stress that so far little has changed for the millions of animals worldwide sent on extremely grim journeys. But of course, this situation also results from the fact that the meat industry is structured in a way that farm animals are transported all over Europe for further fattening and slaughter. Trucks being delayed at borders for days with crammed and stressed animals is not an image of the past time. One illustration example of this is the situation at the EU-Turkey border: 67% of the lorries which were checked did not comply with the legislation. Many experts propose specific measures to tackle these unacceptable practices: an end to long distance transport of live animals in favor of a "carcass-only"- a maximum 8 hour journey time for all animals travelling for slaughter or further fattening. Many legislations recognize finally that animals are sentient beings and as a result that their welfare needs must be fully taken into account. Yet, the animal welfare is in our hands: animals have the right to be treated humanely!