European Animal Welfare
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The accredited W+ Animal Welfare Commitment certification, a tool at the service of sheep, goat, and beef farmers

Sheep, goat and beef farmers in Spain and Hungary are well aware of animal welfare. Beyond the fact that the European production system is the most demanding in the world in terms of animal welfare, the sheep and goat farmers of Spain and Hungary and the beef cattle farmers of Spain have wanted to go a step further in their commitment to welfare through their Animal Welfare Commitment Decalogue and the accreditable certification scheme W+, Animal Welfare Commitment.

According to Javier López, general director of Provacuno, the Decalogue Animal Welfare Commitment reflects «the philosophy and commitment that European livestock farmers have to the welfare of our animals. Beyond the ethical issues that we as committed people assume, welfare on our farms is something unquestionable. It is only through genuine animal welfare that we can guarantee profitability. Farmers know it: a well-cared-for animal is healthier and more productive».

This Decalogue was published on the occasion of the start of the promotion plan co-financed with European funds to promote animal welfare European Animal Welfare Commitment that the Hungarian (JTT) and Spanish (INTEROVIC) and Spanish (PROVACUNO) interprofessional sheep and goat meat associations have been carrying out for two years, with the aim of highlighting the value of animal welfare in European livestock production and publicising the accreditable animal welfare certification schemes specifically developed for sheep, goat and beef farms.

W+ Animal Welfare Commitment, a tool at the service of livestock farmers.

This accreditable certification scheme has been developed in collaboration with the Spanish Society for Animal Welfare (SEPROBA) and technicians specialised in both livestock production and quality certification schemes with the aim of developing «an accreditable certification scheme, based on measurable scientific parameters, reproducible over time and technically feasible on a farm, which not only allows us to reliably guarantee the animal welfare that our farmers maintain on their farms, but also provides them with an important tool for continuous improvement that helps them to make their production systems more efficient and can even help them to reduce costs,» explains Tomás Rodríguez, Interovic’s general manager.

In this sense, Dr. Sándor Kukovics, general manager of JTT, points out that «the European production system is already the most demanding in the world in terms of animal welfare, so with this certification scheme what we are doing is going one step further in production by offering farmers who require it, a tool for continuous improvement and a reliable certification scheme thanks to being an accreditable system, where a national accreditation entity such as ENAC, accredits for this purpose the entities that certify the process, which guarantees additional supervision and certification by an independent entity».

In the opinion of these three interprofessionals, W+ Compromiso Bienestar Animal becomes a tool at the service of all those farmers who want to certify the animal welfare they already practise on their farms. Those wishing to become certified under this scheme can find all the information on the website and at

w+ certification
w+ certification
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The full video of the Second European Animal Welfare Symposium, held on 20 September in Brussels with more than 500 attendees, is now available

The Interprofessional Organization for Beef and Veal in Spain, PROVACUNO, while Interovic and JTT the Interprofessional Organizations for Sheep and Goat Meat in Spain and Hungary have published today the complete video of the Second European Animal Welfare Symposium, held last 20th September in the Sparks space in Brussels with the participation of some twenty expert speakers from all over Europe and more than 500 attendees, in both physical and telematic format.

The meeting, which lasted a full day, was the second edition of the largest event on European animal welfare and forms part of the set of actions planned within the promotion plan co-financed with European funds to promote animal welfare European Animal Welfare Commitment, promoted by Interovic, Provacuno and JTT, with the aim of generating a scientific and technical debate on this subject on the continent.

The event’s aim, organised in several round tables with participants from the main entities and institutions at European level, was to promote advances that lead to maximum animal welfare guarantees. In this sense, during her speech at the closing of the conference, Ms. Joanna Stawowy, member of the cabinet of the European Commissioner for Agriculture Janusz Wojciechowski, called for a «political exercise» in the coming years to improve the state of animal welfare in Europe.

Before, during the development of the Second Symposium, in addition to the participation of representatives of the three interprofessional, Interovic, JTT and Provacuno, various experts analysed the current situation of animal welfare in Europe, such as Dr. Estelle Hamelin, from the World Organisation for Animal Health (WOAH), Miguel Ángel Higuera, from the European Platform for Animal Welfare, Carolina Cucurella, from the UECBV, and Inés Ajuda from the Eurogroup For Animals. All of them provided information and opinions on the different initiatives that are contributing to improving welfare worldwide, as well as emphasising how relations between the governments of different countries, interprofessional and legislators, both national and international, can help.

In a second panel discussion, «From science to certification to the table», Andrea Gavinelli, head of the Animal Welfare unit SANTE.G.3, called for breaking down barriers in Europe «to support initiatives such as European Animal Welfare» and, together, «to move forward through dialogue, negotiation, appropriate and effective legislation and learning from each other». Gavinelli was joined on stage by Laura Boyle of the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP), Paolo Ferrari of the Centro Ricerche Produzioni Animali (CRPA) and Laura Godoy of Bureau Veritas.

The closing panel, «Consumption and Animal Welfare», analysed the relationship between the consumer and animal welfare and the relationship between consumer and animal welfare.

An event created to improve our world and our reality».

For Raúl Muñiz, president of Interovic, the event provided «very important reflections on European animal welfare and how, together, we are going to be able to improve our sector so that at the same time it serves to improve our world, our reality, our society and, of course, the daily lives of our farmers and our production chain, which are our reason for being and what has brought us together here today».

For his part, Javier López, director general of Provacuno, emphasised that «the importance of this European animal welfare promotion program and other programs aimed at the domestic market, allow European consumers to know and value the work that the sectors carry out to meet their requirements, providing them with products of the highest quality through accredited certification, also encouraging cooperation between the member states of the Union».

To access the video in English:

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Some interesting reflections from the Second European Animal Welfare Symposium held in Brussels

On 20 September, more than 500 people had the opportunity to attend, both in person and online, the 2nd International Symposium on European Animal Welfare, held in Brussels and consolidated as a unique multidisciplinary forum to promote advances that lead to maximum animal welfare guarantees not only in the European Union but also with the ambition to be a reference worldwide.

Around twenty expert speakers attended to the event from different European countries who had the opportunity to express their different points of view, debate their opinions, and refute the impressions of the other attendees, all of them, contributed to generating conversation around a key issue for the future of livestock farming, such as animal welfare.

This was the case of Andrea Gavinelli, head of the Animal Welfare SANTE.G.3 unit, who wanted to point out that, in recent years and in Europe alone, 50 different labelling systems have been created, «which only generate confusion», which is why he called for unification and for «breaking down barriers in Europe and opening up to dialogue». And he recalled how the EU can contribute knowledge to support initiatives such as European Animal Welfare, which will serve to «open up dialogue and negotiation that will lead us to appropriate and effective legislation», as well as «learning from each other»

Another Italian, Paolo Ferrari of the Centro Ricerche Produzioni Animali (CRPA), called for «creating a system of accreditation and labelling that is well understood. «We want a product that is worth paying more for because it is really going to bring benefits,» he said. He linked the success of the initiative of the interprofessional organisations organising the symposium «to the effort to raise awareness and educate consumers and producers, companies and organisations, to pass on the benefits of a product according to animal welfare rules».

A more emotional approach was called for by Portugal’s Inés Ajuda of Eurogroup for Animals, who called for «listening to consumers, who like to know what they are eating and want to know that we respect animals». She also put herself in the role of the farmer, «their passion, their belief in what they do every day and how to take the necessary measures to be closer to our consumers».

A view shared during the event by Carolina Cucurella, representative of the European Animal Industry and Transport (UECBV): «Farmers have to feel proud of the products they produce and how, in this way, to achieve more satisfied consumers. And that means that the legislation, the authorities, must also know how to value the importance of rural areas and to maintain the social network that livestock farming is capable of keeping alive».

Laura Boyle from Ireland, of the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP), as well as giving us her vision from the British Isles, reminded those present of the importance of basing animal welfare on a series of solid evidence and data to reinforce the implementation of measures, and of adding indicators such as animal behaviour to find out whether the necessary parameters are being met. In his speech, he also did not hesitate to congratulate the livestock sector «for the clear improvement it is achieving, which will lead to an increase in consumer confidence» and gave as an example the holding of this 2nd International Symposium on European Animal Welfare.

The Symposium was recorded in its entirety and the video is available to all on the official website:

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Animal Welfare



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