Agricultural minister Schouten requests an advice on the preconditions for positive animal welfare in livestock farming

The Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality has the ambition to protect and improve animal health and welfare in the transition to circular agriculture. A leading principle is the absence of physical adaptations to animals and the development of animal housing systems based on the needs of the animal.

Agricultural minister Schouten has requested from the Council on Animal Affairs an advice on the preconditions for future livestock farming in order for animals to experience positive welfare. Subjects to be covered include:

  • the definition of the concepts ‘humane livestock farming’ and ‘positive animal welfare’;
  • the needs of animals that have to be met to experience positive welfare;
  • the useful parameters to determine whether these needs are fulfilled;
  • how future animal housing systems can meet these needs.

In 2020 the Council on Animal Affairs published his advice on ‘Animal welfare in circular agriculture’ with the recommendation to work out the specific preconditions to improve and protect animal welfare in circular agriculture. The minister now endorses this recommendation by her request for advice on this subject.

Image: Twan Wiermans