|Author (Person)||Cronin, David|
|Series Title||European Voice|
|Series Details||Vol 7, No.16, 19.4.01, p3|
Food safety Commissioner David Byrne has ruled out extra inspectors to deal with the live exports trade, despite his recent pledge that a "thorough review" of animal transports would be conducted as part of efforts to prevent further outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease.
Just four of the 130 staff working for the European Commission's Dublin-based Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) specialise in animal welfare issues, including live transports.
But in a response to a parliamentary question last week, Byrne admitted there were "no immediate plans to further increase the resources allocated within the FVO to the animal welfare area".
Unveiling new proposals for strengthening EU animal welfare rules last week, Byrne declared that "long-distance transport [of animals] should be the exception rather than the rule".
And the previous week, he told the European Parliament a complete assessment of the trade was needed, with emphasis on how to prevent cross-contamination across borders.
Byrne's spokesman Thorsten Muench denied that there is any contradiction in his statements. "Controls and inspections of live animal transports are mainly the responsibility of the member states; the FVO just monitors that the controls are properly enforced.
"There is already a lot of EU legislation on animal welfare in place. The important thing is that member states now place it higher on the political agenda."
Meanwhile, anti-cruelty campaigners have called on Byrne to take tougher action against EU countries which ignore the 1993 directive on live transports.
Food safety Commissioner David Byrne has ruled out extra inspectors to deal with the live exports trade, despite his recent pledge that a 'thorough review' of animal transports would be conducted as part of efforts to prevent further outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease.
|Subject Categories||Business and Industry|