Category Archives: A



Agriculture Contents

  • General framework: Financing, Rural development, Direct support, Structural operations, Competition, Information and statistics
  • Markets for agricultural products: Direct support schemes, Common organisation of agricultural markets (CMO), Sectoral applications, Other products
  • Food:  Food quality, Organic farming, Genetically-modified organisms
  • Environment: Management and conservation of resources, Forest resources and non-food products, Pollution from agriculture
  • Agriculture: enlargement: Pre-accession, On-going negotiations, 2004 and 2007 enlargements

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Agriculture


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.



The common agricultural policy (CAP) dates back to the early days of European integration, when Member States made a commitment to restructuring and increasing food production, which had been damaged as a result of the Second World War. Today, the CAP still has a pivotal role in the European Union, not just because farmland and forests account for more than 90 % of land within the EU, but also because it has become an essential mechanism for facing new challenges in terms of food quality, environmental protection and trade. The 2003 reform was a key moment in the CAP’s development, adapting the policy to meet the new requirements of farmers, consumers and the planet. This approach continues to form the basis of the future development of the common agricultural policy of an enlarged Union present on the world stage.

Agriculture Contents

  • General frameworkFinancing, Rural development, Direct support, Structural operations, Competition, Information and statistics
  • Markets for agricultural productsDirect support schemes, Common organisation of agricultural markets (CMO), Sectoral applications, Other products
  • FoodFood quality, Organic farming, Genetically-modified organisms
  • EnvironmentManagement and conservation of resources, Forest resources and non-food products, Pollution from agriculture
  • Agriculture: enlargementPre-accession, On-going negotiations, 2004 and 2007 enlargements

See also

Overviews of European Union: Agriculture.
Further information: European Commission Agriculture and Rural Development Directorate-General.

Agriculture: enlargement

Agriculture: enlargement

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Agriculture: enlargement


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Agriculture > Agriculture: enlargement

Agriculture: enlargement

The recent enlargements of the European Union have had the effect of increasing the significance of agriculture and have resulted in new economic and social challenges for the common agricultural policy (CAP). The new Member States have huge agricultural potential in terms of human resources and providing further farmland. However, this potential has yet to be fully realised. There is a considerable socioeconomic divide between the old and the new Member States in the agricultural sector. Through its intervention, the EU aims to prepare candidate countries for implementing the CAP, specifically by adapting their infrastructure and reducing the disparities between Member States upon their accession.


  • Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA)
  • Pre-accession agricultural instrument (SAPARD)


  • The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia – Agriculture, fisheries and food safety
  • Croatia – Agriculture, fisheries and food safety
  • Turkey – Agriculture, fisheries and food safety
  • Iceland – Agriculture, fisheries and food safety


  • Bulgaria
  • Romania


  • Cyprus
  • Estonia
  • Hungary
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Malta
  • Poland
  • The Czech Republic
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia

A simplified CAP for Europe

A simplified CAP for Europe

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about A simplified CAP for Europe


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Agriculture > General framework

A simplified CAP for Europe

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 18 March 2009 – A simplified CAP for Europe – A success for all [COM(2009) 128 final – Not published in the Official Journal].


Since 2005 the Commission has taken on a number of activities which have simplified the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) from a technical * and policy * perspective.

Technical simplification

The main technical simplifications concern:

  • the repeal of legal acts deemed to be obsolete;
  • the adoption of the Regulation establishing a common organisation of agricultural markets in 2007, better known as the ‘single CMO’. This new Regulation replaces 21 individual common organisations of the market and groups them together into one single regulation;
  • the modification and streamlining of the policy on State aid, including the adoption of the de minimis Regulation in the agricultural sector in 2007;
  • a study to measure administrative costs;
  • the creation of platforms for the sharing of best practices concerning CAP simplification.

Policy simplification

The policy-related actions concern:

  • the sugar CMO reform, which merged the various quota types into one single quota. This reform also included the budget for sugar-aid into the envelope of the Single Payment Scheme and replaced intervention by private storage;
  • the Single Payment Scheme, to make it more “farmer friendly” and to simplify its functioning;
  • reforms in the fruit and vegetables and wine sectors, which integrated these sectors into the Single Payment Scheme;
  • impact assessments and evaluations, which involve stakeholders at an early stage of the legislative process and render it more transparent. They also improve the quality of proposals and the quality of debates on proposals.

Processes followed for CAP simplification

  • stakeholder consultation, screening, Action Plan;
  • the conference organised in October 2006;
  • internal training on legislative drafting;
  • IT systems: the ISAMM system (Information System for Agricultural Market Management and Monitoring) to facilitate the electronic exchange of information between Commission services and Member States is in its final development phase.

CAP simplification Action Plan

Launched at the end of 2006, the Action Plan is based on suggestions from Member States, stakeholders, producers’ organisations and the Commission. The plan had evolved to around fifty technical simplification projects by January 2009, of which 43 have been implemented.

The projects taken up concern, in particular:

  • the abolition of licences for exports of beef without export refunds;
  • egg marketing standards;
  • the abolition of the requirement that farmers should have a parcel at their disposal for at least 10 months before being able to apply for direct payments;
  • the elimination of most of the obligations relating to import and export licences;
  • specific marketing standards concerning 26 types of fruit and vegetables;
  • an amendment of the rules on cross-compliance * (for example, advance notice for on-the-spot checks); etc.

Special focus

An important accomplishment within the context of legislative simplification of the CAP was the adoption of the Council Regulation establishing a common organisation of agricultural markets, commonly referred to as the “single CMO”. The new Regulation replaces all 21 individual common organisations of the market and groups them together into one single regulation, thereby reducing the number of articles from around 920 to around 230 and repealing a total of 78 Council acts. Finally, the single CMO facilitates further simplification and reduction of administrative burden at the level of Commission implementing provisions.

Within the context of the Action Programme for reducing Administrative Burdens, a study assessing the administrative burden on farms arising from CAP was published at the end of 2007. This study, carried out in Denmark, Germany, France, Ireland and Italy, provides an assessment of the administrative costs associated with the Single Payment Scheme in 2006 and presents an outlook on future developments. The results of the study indicate that administrative burden on farms will decrease substantially. One factor is the learning curve effect and the disappearance of the administrative costs associated with the start-up of the Single Payment Scheme. The changes decided in the Health Check are another important reason.

The Health Check of the CAP reform simplifies the provisions of the Single Payment Scheme and renders the 2003 CAP reform more efficient. In particular, it stresses the need for further decoupling of support and the abolition of several schemes such as payments for energy crops and durum wheat, etc. to reduce the administrative burden on farms. The Health Check has also simplified the rules on the modulation franchise * as well as the provisions concerning the functioning of the National Reserve and payment entitlements that originate from that reserve.


The actions under consideration concern:

  • common starting dates for legal acts;
  • communication and conservation of information;
  • a training programme for officials which involves a farm stay;
  • harmonising cross-compliance rules;
  • improvements in quality policy;
  • more regular review of legislation;
  • continuation of the Action Plan with the addition of new projects;
  • training on writing skills, to make legislation easier to read;
  • continuation of sharing best practices.


This Communication takes stock of the activities carried out since the 2005 Communication on CAP simplification. As a result of the progress made in simplifying the Common Agricultural Policy, the Commission expects to achieve its objective of reducing administrative burdens by 25% by 2012.

Key terms of the Act
  • Technical simplification: implies revision of the legal framework, administrative procedures and management mechanisms to achieve streamlining and greater cost-effectiveness and attain existing policy objectives more effectively, without changing the underlying policies.
  • Policy simplification: reduces complexity through improvements to the agricultural support and rural development policy instruments. It may be described as ‘policy development with simplification implications’.
  • Cross-compliance: the payment of certain European aid is subject to compliance with basic environmental and health requirements.
  • Modulation: an instrument introduced by the 2003 reform which allows resources intended for direct aid to farmers to be transferred to rural development measures during the period up to 2013.

Agreement with Bangladesh on partnership and development

Agreement with Bangladesh on partnership and development

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Agreement with Bangladesh on partnership and development


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

External relations > Relations with third countries > Asia

Agreement with Bangladesh on partnership and development

Document or Iniciative

Council Decision 2001/332/EC of 26 February 2001 concerning the conclusion of the Cooperation Agreement between the European Community and the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on partnership and development.

Cooperation Agreement between the European Community and the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on partnership and development.


The cooperation put in place between the European Union (EU) and Bangladesh should contribute to the sustainable development of the country and the fight against poverty. Bangladesh is one of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

Areas of cooperation

Special attention is paid by the partners to the fight against drugs and against HIV/AIDS. Their actions comprise:

  • prevention measures, monitoring and fighting AIDS;
  • information provision and educational activities;
  • improving access to health services and treatment for the sick;
  • the rehabilitation of drug addicts.

Trade cooperation aims at the expansion of trade and the opening up of markets. It takes place in compliance with World Trade Organization (WTO) agreements. The partners therefore need to make progress towards removing trade barriers and resolving transit or re-export issues. They must improve customs cooperation and information sharing.

Moreover, the country must make progress in its undertakings as regards the protection of intellectual, industrial and commercial property rights.

Economic cooperation aims particularly at:

  • facilitating contacts between economic operators, business communities, enterprises and investors;
  • improving the business environment and conditions for investment, particularly for small and medium-sized enterprises;
  • promoting technology transfer.

The agreement enshrines the principle of reciprocal access by the partners to their respective public works contracts. They apply the principle of free access to international maritime transport contracts.

In the area of the environment, cooperation must make it possible in particular to:

  • reduce the risks of natural disasters, and combat soil degradation in particular;
  • develop environmental policy and workers’ training;
  • promote sustainable and non-polluting energies.

The partners share knowledge in the field of science and technology. They cooperate in combating the production of drugs and money laundering.

A key point of the partnership is the development of workers’ rights and skills. International Labour Organization (ILO) instruments are to be implemented (in the areas of child labour, forced labour, freedom of association, trade union rights, etc.). Furthermore, measures are to be taken to foster education and vocational qualifications, particularly for the poorest population sectors.

Regional cooperation

Cooperation actions may be undertaken with other countries in the region, as a priority in the fields of:

  • technical assistance and workers’ training;
  • the promotion of intra-regional trade;
  • support for regional cooperation organisations (such as the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC));
  • examining questions with a regional dimension, particularly in the sectors of transport, communications, the environment and health.

Audiovisual Media Services Directive

Audiovisual Media Services Directive

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Audiovisual Media Services Directive


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Audiovisual and media

Audiovisual Media Services (AMS) Directive

Document or Iniciative

Directive 2010/13/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 10 March 2010 on the coordination of certain provisions laid down by law, regulation or administrative action in Member States concerning the provision of audiovisual media services (Audiovisual Media Services Directive) (Text with EEA relevance).


This Directive establishes legal, regulatory and administrative provisions related to the provision and distribution of audiovisual media services.

Which media service providers * does the Directive apply to?

This Directive applies to media service providers when:

  • the head office of the provider and the editorial decisions taken about the audiovisual media services are located in the same Member State;
  • the head office and audiovisual media services are located in different Member States;
  • the service provider has its head office in a Member State, whereas decisions on the audiovisual media services are taken in a third country;
  • the service provider uses a satellite up-link situated in a Member State;
  • the service provider uses satellite capacity appertaining to a Member State.

To what extent does freedom of retransmission apply?

Member States shall not restrict retransmissions on their territory of audiovisual media services from other Member States, as long as the programmes broadcast are not of a violent or pornographic nature which could offend the sensibilities of minors.

They may also limit retransmissions if they believe public policy, health and security or consumer protection to be at risk.

What are the obligations of media service providers?

Media service providers shall make the following information available to consumers:

  • their name;
  • their geographical address;
  • their contact details;
  • the competent regulatory or supervisory bodies.

Protection of minors

In order to protect minors against the negative effects of pornographic or violent programmes, such programmes, when broadcast, must be preceded by an acoustic warning or identified by the presence of a visual symbol throughout the broadcast.

Incitement to hatred

Audiovisual media services may not contain any incitement to hatred based on race, sex, religion or nationality.

Accessibility of audiovisual media services

Providers are obliged to improve the accessibility of their services for people with a visual or hearing disability.

The right to information

Member States may take measures aimed at ensuring that certain events, which it considers are of major importance for society, cannot be broadcast exclusively in such a way as to deprive a substantial proportion of the public in that Member State. Each Member State may draw up a list of events and implementation procedures.

For the purpose of short news reports, any broadcaster established in a Member State has the right to access short extracts of events of high interest to the public which are broadcast on an exclusive basis.

Promotion of European and independent works

Broadcasters must devote at least 10% of their transmission time, or 10% of their programming budget, to European works created by producers who are independent of broadcasters, excluding time allocated to:

  • news;
  • sports events;
  • games;
  • advertising;
  • teletext services;
  • teleshopping.

With regard to on-demand audiovisual media services, Member States shall ensure that audiovisual media service providers promote the production of and access to European works. To this end, audiovisual service providers can contribute financially to the production of European works, or they can reserve a share and/or prominence for European works in their catalogue of programmes.

Audiovisual commercial communication

Media service providers provide audiovisual commercial communications *. These must comply with certain conditions:

  • they must be readily recognisable. Surreptitious audiovisual commercial communication shall be prohibited;
  • they shall not use subliminal techniques;
  • they shall not prejudice respect for human dignity;
  • they shall not be discriminatory;
  • they shall not encourage behaviour harmful to the environment;
  • they shall not contain messages relating to alcoholic beverages specifically aimed at minors;
  • they shall not promote tobacco products;
  • they shall restrict the promotion of medicinal products and medical treatments to those available on prescription only;
  • they shall not cause moral or physical detriment to minors.

Certain programmes or audiovisual media services may be sponsored *. In this case, they must meet other types of requirements:

  • they shall not affect the editorial independence of the media service provider;
  • they shall not directly encourage the purchase or rental of goods;
  • viewers shall be informed of the sponsorship agreement.

Product placement is authorised in certain circumstances and in certain types of programmes.

Television advertising and teleshopping

Television advertising and teleshopping shall be distinguishable from editorial content through optical, acoustic or spatial means.

The transmission of films made for television (excluding series, serials and documentaries), cinematographic works and news programmes may be interrupted by television advertising or teleshopping on the condition that the interruption only takes place once for each programme period of 30 minutes.

This Directive repeals Directive 89/552/EC.

Key terms of the Act
  • Media service provider: the natural or legal person who has editorial responsibility for the choice of the audiovisual content of the audiovisual media service and determines the manner in which it is organised;
  • Audiovisual commercial communication: images with or without sound which are designed to promote, directly or indirectly, the goods, services or image of a natural or legal entity pursuing an economic activity;
  • Sponsorship: any contribution made by public or private undertakings or natural persons not engaged in providing audiovisual media services or in the production of audiovisual works, to the financing of audiovisual media services or programmes with a view to promoting their name, trade mark, image, activities or products;
  • Product placement: the inclusion of a product, a service or a trade mark in a programme in return for payment or for similar consideration.


Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Directive 2010/13/EU


OJ L 95 of 15.4.2010

A new partnership with South-East Asia

A new partnership with South-East Asia

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about A new partnership with South-East Asia


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

External relations > Relations with third countries > Asia

A new partnership with South-East Asia

Document or Iniciative

Commission Communication on a new partnership with South-East Asia [COM(2003) 399 final – Not published in the Official Journal]


The Communication proposes that EU/South-East Asia relations should be further developed in line with the guidelines contained in the 2001 Communication on ‘ Europe and Asia, a Strategic Framework for Enhanced Partnerships ‘.

South-East Asia is defined as covering the association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) as a regional grouping consisting of 10 individual countries: Brunei Darussalam, Burma/Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and East Timor, which is not yet a member of ASEAN.

The Communication identifies six strategic priorities:

  • supporting regional stability and the fight against terrorism;
  • promoting human rights, democratic principles and good governance;
  • mainstreaming justice and home affairs issues;
  • injecting a new dynamism into regional trade and investment relations;
  • continuing to support the development of less prosperous countries;
  • intensifying dialogue and cooperation in specific strategic sectors.

Reasons for enhancing relations

The EU and South-East Asia share stronger economic, political and security interests than ever before. The future will see a shift in the centre of gravity of the world economy to the Asia Pacific region, with ASEAN emerging as a key partner for trade and investment. ASEAN is also making efforts towards creating a regional economic space that will help attract foreign direct investment, e.g. the creation of the free-trade area in January 2003.

The two regions find themselves more dependent on one another in addressing global challenges and the EU therefore wishes to broaden its programme of cooperation with South-East Asia. The priorities remain poverty reduction and improving basic health and education services. The European Community has adopted a holistic approach that acknowledges the inter-relationship of different issues so as to address them in the best possible way.

The two regions also share common features and values, such as a preference for diversity, regional integration and a peaceful and rule-based multi-polar world with strong multilateral organisations.


ASEAN was originally created as a mechanism for preventing crises and one of the EU’s priorities is also to contribute to supporting regional stability and the fight against terrorism. Through dialogue and other action, its role is to prevent conflict and foster peace and stability. In matters of political dialogue, the Commission believes that ASEM is the most appropriate framework to deal with global issues, while region-specific issues should be dealt with in the ASEAN context. In its opinion, the EU should also play a more active role in the ARF, the ASEAN Regional Forum. Although it actively supports the ASEAN integration process, it recognises that only the ASEAN countries can determine the rhythm of the process.

Support for regional cooperation is also designed to combat terrorism. In the opinion of the EU, action against terrorism not only involves security and public order measures but also political, social, economic and financial governance. It therefore encourages ASEAN to implement a comprehensive strategy, taking care to respect human rights and peaceful political opposition. The EU is also prepared to consider support to any country that requires its assistance for the implementation of UNSC resolution 1373 (on cooperation in the fight against terrorism) and other relevant UN conventions.

With a view to promoting human rights, democratic principles and good governance, the Commission believes that new agreements should all contain the ‘essential element’ clause. This clause stipulates that respect for fundamental human rights and democratic principles, as laid down in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, underpins the internal and external policies of the parties and constitutes an essential element of the agreement. The parties may also decide to launch human rights-specific bilateral dialogues. Specific cooperation measures should be undertaken to support democratic structures, build the capacity of institutions, improve the rule of law and governance and strengthen civil society. Strengthening institutional and regulatory frameworks and fighting corruption are priorities in the area of good governance.

Another priority is to mainstream justice and home affairs issues in the EU’s external relations. Issues of migration, combating organised crime, trafficking in human beings, money laundering, illicit drugs, piracy and counterfeiting should be incorporated systematically into dialogues.

With a view to injecting a new dynamism into regional trade and investment relations, the Commission proposes a trade action plan, the Trans-Regional EU-ASEAN Trade Initiative (TREATI), which is set out in Annex II. This initiative paves the way for a possible free-trade agreement that should only come after the conclusion of the Doha Development Round and be subject to sufficient progress on regulatory convergence.

TREATI proposes that EU-ASEAN cooperation on trade issues should take place on a region-to-region basis and in a context of flexible cooperation. Bilateral dialogues on economic issues should be further supplemented by a dialogue mechanism involving at least two ASEAN countries. Close coordination on technical assistance and capacity-building would be required and each country would have to develop its own road-map setting out the stages and schedule for its participation in the various activities.

Continuing to support the development of less prosperous countries is another priority with poverty reduction as its main goal. The priority issues here are assisting poor countries in their integration in the world economy, governance and human rights, environment and forestry, justice and home affairs issues, the fight against terrorism, trade-related technical assistance, supporting the TREATI process and ASEAN’s integration process.

Assistance should be concentrated in a limited number of key areas, based on a sectoral approach, and involve actors from outside the public sector. The Commission will promote trilateral cooperation and twinning arrangements.

The Commission offers a list of sectors in which dialogue and cooperation need to be intensified. Both parties can choose sectors of genuine mutual interest and then opt for a regional or bilateral approach. These sectors and the present situation, specific issues identified and suggested lines of action for each one are described in Annex III. They are as follows:

  • economic and trade issues;
  • justice and home affairs issues;
  • science, technology, research and development;
  • higher education and culture;
  • energy;
  • transport;
  • the information society;
  • statistics.

Institutional framework and resources

The Commission proposes to revitalise ties with South-East Asia through the strengthening of bilateral relations since the renegotiation of the only existing regional agreement – dating from 1980 – is impossible owing to the EU common position on Burma/Myanmar, one of the members of ASEAN. The legal basis for cooperation is the 1992 Regulation on financial and technical assistance to, and economic cooperation with, the developing countries in Latin America and Asia.

For optimum use of the institutional framework (bilateral agreements, ARF, ASEM, etc.) and available resources, the Commission proposes an evaluation based on political and institutional feasibility, the achievement of maximum impact, demand from the region or the country and the best possible use of available resources. It puts forward options for optimising the institutional framework:

  • EU-ASEAN ministerial meetings for regional political dialogue;
  • ASEM summits, ministerial meetings and ARF ministerial meetings on global and security issues;
  • consultations between ASEAN and EC economic affairs ministers;
  • an official bilateral institutional framework for implementation of agreements.

Alternative options are proposed for the optimisation of resources:

  • taking advantage of the network of Commission delegations;
  • improving the quality and delivery of EC external assistance through better strategic programming;
  • looking for greater synergies between EIB and Commission operations.

A new visibility strategy

To counter the lack of mutual awareness, the Commission proposes a coordinated visibility campaign. Efforts should be intensified in the area of academic, scientific and cultural exchanges.

Related Acts

Council Conclusions of 26 January 2004

Animal by-products

Animal by-products

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Animal by-products


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Animal nutrition

Animal by-products

Document or Iniciative

Regulation (EC) No 1069/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 October 2009 laying down health rules as regards animal by-products and derived products not intended for human consumption and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002.


This Regulation facilitates the efficient management of animal by-products whilst maintaining the high level of protection that is currently in place against risks to public and animal health and to the environment.

Products concerned

This Regulation shall apply to:

  • animal by-products * and derived products * which are not intended for human consumption;
  • products intended for purposes other than human consumption:
    • products of animal origin which may be destined for human consumption;
    • raw materials for the production of products of animal origin.

End point in the manufacturing chain

This Regulation introduces the notion of an “end point” in the manufacturing of animal by-products, beyond which they are no longer subject to the rules governing this type of product, since potential risks have been eliminated. Instead, the general rules on product safety are to apply. As an example, where animal fat produced by an incinerating factory is processed and the product of that transformation is used to produce plastics, the probability that the final product might transmit a significant biological risk is very slight.

Essential guarantees for public and animal health

Products of animal origin may be used outside the food chain for various purposes: skins for leather production, powdered milk to feed animals, and blood products in diagnostic medical devices. Such by-products may be a vector of diseases affecting human beings or animals when they are used in animal feedingstuffs or to produce technical products.

This Regulation preserves the basic guarantees introduced in 2003 against such risks. In particular, it maintains:

  • a risk-based categorisation of animal by-products which determines whether they may be used as animal feedingstuffs, for the manufacture of technical products or for other purposes, or whether they must be destroyed;
  • an obligation for Member States and operators to ensure that animal by-products are collected and disposed of as soon as possible;
  • the exclusion of products that are unfit for hum an consumption from the feed chain for farmed animals; and lastly
  • a ban on feeding animals of one species with material derived from the same species (“intra-species recycling ban”).

A more coherent legal framework

Animal by-products are used to produce cosmetics, medicines and diagnostic medical devices. When they are used for the manufacture of such products, they are subject to other provisions of European law. Slaughterhouses, milk factories and other food establishments manufacturing animal by-products are already bound by European legislation on human food or animal feedingstuffs, and are the subject of inspections in this regard.

This Regulation aims at improving coherency between other provisions of European law and the health rules applying to animal by-products. The potential risks are tackled with respect to the appropriate legislation, which avoids operators being exposed to unnecessary constraints.

Being based on experience gained, this Regulation clarifies under which circumstances and in what way environmental legislation shall apply to operations involving animal by-products. This legislation applies for example where the spreading of manure as a fertiliser has effects on soil and the groundwater table.


The current categorisation of animal by-products may now be amended by the Commission under the comitology procedure. Prior to any change, a scientific organisation such as the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) or the Scientific Committee for Consumer Products (SCCP) must assess the possible risks of a specific animal by-product for public and animal health.


Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 shall be repealed with effect from 4 March 2011.

Key terms of the Act
  • Animal by-products: entire bodies or parts of animals, products of animal origin or other products obtained from animals, which are not intended for human consumption, including oocytes, embryos and semen.
  • Derived products: products obtained from one or more treatments, transformations or steps of processing of animal by-products.
Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 41/2009


OJ L 16 of 21.1.2009

Action plan on animal welfare 2006-2010

Action plan on animal welfare 2006-2010

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Action plan on animal welfare 2006-2010


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Animal welfare

Action plan on animal welfare 2006-2010

For the period 2006-2010, the EU is planning general measures aimed at ensuring animal welfare and protection. The measures will focus on improving standards, developing research and indicators, informing professionals and consumers and taking action at international level.

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 23 January 2006 on a Community Action Plan on the Protection and Welfare of animals 2006-2010 [COM(2006) 13 – Official Journal C 49 of 28.02.2006].


The action plan describes the measures the Commission intends to implement between 2006 and 2010 with the aim of developing and guaranteeing animal welfare and protection within the European Union (EU) and in other parts of the world. Its objective is to clarify Community legislation and make provisions for proposals in areas where it is insufficient.

The Commission would like to achieve the following objectives:

  • define more clearly EU action on animal welfare;
  • continue to promote high standards in this field;
  • provide greater coordination of resource;
  • support research and promote alternatives to animal testing;
  • ensure the coherence and coordination of all EU policies on animal welfare;

The action plan defines five main fields of interlinked action with the aim of achieving the stated objectives:

  • upgrading minimum standards
  • promoting research and substitute methods for animal testing;
  • introducing welfare indicators ;
  • ensuring that professionals and the general public are better informed;
  • supporting international initiatives for animal protection.

In terms of minimum standards, the action plan would reinforce the existing Community regulation in line with latest scientific knowledge, practical experience and progress in international fora.It also suggests that the minimum standards should be extended to cover species and issues currently not adequately provided for under EU legislation. Emphasis will inter alia be put on the respect of animal welfare by means of other policies, especially the Common Agricultural Policy (conditions for assistance, possible help in rural development policy).

The action plan recommends encouraging research projects that fill in the gaps and provide a sound scientific framework upon which future developments of EU policy on animal protection and welfare can be based. In addition, it proposes the creation of a European centre or laboratory, whose mission would be to collect, coordinate and exchange information on research and activities. The plan also emphasises the application of the 3Rs Declaration (replacement, reduction and refinement) defined at European level with regard to animal testing.

The action plan is hoping to introduce standardised animal welfare indicators. These indicators would guarantee that the minimum standards or stricter standards have been respected. The action plan also suggests that a Community label be created in order to promote products elaborated under higher animal welfare standards.

The action plan underlines the importance of training professionals, especially in order to disseminate good practice, and of informing consumers to enable them to make more enlightened choices on their purchases.

Under the action plan, the EU will continue to promote animal welfare standards within international fora such as the International Office of Epizootics (IOE) and the European Council. The plan advocates promoting the recognition and importance of these standards within the World Trade Organisation. Closer cooperation is also envisaged between the EU and countries that apply high standards and with developing countries.

The measures foreseen in the action plan will be assessed regularly in order to evaluate the progress made and to program complementary action after 2010.


The action plan responds to the principles laid down in the protocol on animal welfare and protection annexed to the Treaty establishing the European Community (EC Treaty). This protocol recognises that animals are sentient beings and that full regard should be paid to animal welfare concerns when formulating or implementing policies relating to agriculture, transport, research and the internal market.

The impact study accompanying the action plan takes stock of the anticipated benefits of the action plan, of the existing legislation and of the research undertaken.

Since 1974, European legislation has been developed with a view to protecting animals and ensuring their well-being on farm holdings, during transport and at the time of slaughter.

Related Acts

Report from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions – Options for animal welfare labelling and the establishment of a European Network of Reference Centres for the protection and welfare of animals [COM(2009) 584 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

The Commission wishes to improve information for European consumers on animal welfare matters. In order to do this, it is launching a debate on the labelling of consumer products. By enabling consumers to identify and choose animal welfare-friendly products, the Commission hopes to encourage producers to improve their practices in order to satisfy demand.
This Report should enable the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions to conduct this debate, specifically in the following areas:

  • consumer awareness of animal welfare;
  • animal welfare-friendly products;
  • the terms used on products;
  • third country producers’ access to voluntary certification systems, in compliance with the principles of the World Trade Organisation (WTO);
  • indicators and methods of measuring animal welfare;
  • coordinating centres of scientific research.

Animal welfare during transport

Animal welfare during transport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Animal welfare during transport


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Animal welfare

Animal welfare during transport

Document or Iniciative

Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 of 22 December 2004 on the protection of animals during transport and related operations and amending Directives 64/432/EEC and 93/119/EC and Regulation (EC) No 1255/97.


The text sets out to regulate transport of live vertebrate animals within the European Union (EU) where such transport is carried out as part of an economic activity. The aim is to prevent injury or undue suffering to animals and to ensure that they have appropriate conditions that meet their needs.

This regulation strengthens existing legislation on animal welfare during transport by identifying the parties involved and their respective responsibilities, putting in place enhanced measures on authorisations and inspections and laying down stricter rules on transport.

The parties involved and their responsibilities

The regulation extends responsibility for animal welfare to all parties involved in the process, including operations before and after transport. All parties must ensure that they comply with the legislation when performing those operations in which they are involved.

The regulation applies to transporters (already covered by the old legislation), organisers, drivers and “keepers” (staff at assembly centres, markets and slaughterhouses, and farmers).

All parties involved and their staff must undergo appropriate training. In particular, drivers and attendants must possess a certificate of competence issued after they have completed a comprehensive training course on animal welfare during transport and passed an exam organised by an independent body designated by the competent authorities.

Authorisations and inspections

For all journeys exceeding 65 km, transporters must hold an authorisation issued by a competent authority in the Member State in which they are established or represented. To obtain this authorisation, applicants must demonstrate that they have sufficient and appropriate staff, equipment and operational procedures.

For long journeys (exceeding eight hours), applicants must also provide:

  • specific documents: certificates of competence for drivers and attendants, certificates of approval for the means of transport to be used, details of the procedures for tracing and recording vehicle movements, and contingency plans; and
  • proof that they use a satellite navigation system, from 1 January 2007 for new vehicles and from 2009 for older vehicles.

These authorisations are valid for five years. They are issued in a standard European format and recorded in an electronic database accessible to the authorities of all the Member States.

Transporters carrying out long journeys between Member States must also possess a journey log drawn up by the transport organiser using a standard format and which contains information relating to the journey (identification of the animals and the persons in charge of them, place of departure and of destination, checks carried out at various stages of the journey, etc.).

Checks must be carried out by the competent authorities at key stages of the journey, including at exit points and border inspection posts. In addition, supplementary checks may be carried out at any stage of the journey on a random or targeted basis.

When carrying out checks, the competent authority must verify the validity of the authorisations, the certificates of approval and competence and the information recorded in the journey log. The official veterinarian must also check the state of the animals and their fitness to continue the journey. In the case of transport by sea, the state and conformity of the transport vessel must also be checked.

Technical rules on animal transports

The regulation introduces stricter rules on journeys exceeding eight hours. These rules apply to both vehicles and animals.

The regulation provides that transport vehicles must be fitted with equipment of the highest quality, including a temperature monitoring system (mechanical ventilation, temperature recording, warning system fitted in the driver’s cabin), permanent access to drinking water and better conditions on livestock vessels (ventilation, watering devices, approval system, etc.).

The transport of certain animals is prohibited. This applies to very young animals (calves of less than 10 days, pigs of less than three weeks and lambs of less than a week), except where the journey does not exceed 100 km. The regulation also prohibits transport of females in the last stages of gestation and during the first week after giving birth.

In addition, the transport conditions for horses on long journeys are improved, notably through the obligation to use individual stalls.

The provisions on journey times and space allowances for animals, which were contained in the old legislation, have not been amended. In terms of journey times, the regulation provides for different times depending on the type of animal: unweaned animals, i.e. animals still drinking milk (nine hours of travel, followed by one hour’s rest to enable the animals to drink, followed by a further nine hours of travel), pigs (24 hours of travel, provided there is continuous access to water), horses (24 hours of travel, with access to water every eight hours), cattle, sheep and goats (14 hours of travel, followed by one hour’s rest to enable the animals to drink, followed by a further 14 hours of travel). The above sequences may be repeated provided the animals are unloaded, fed, watered and rested for at least 24 hours at an approved control post.


The revision of the maximum journey times and the space allowances for animals (two areas which are unchanged in the new legislation) must be the subject of a new proposal to be submitted four years after the entry into force of the regulation at the latest and which takes into account the application of the new rules by the Member States.

This regulation repeals and replaces Directive 91/628/EEC with effect from 5 January 2007.


Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation (EC) No 1/2005

Date of application: 5.1.2007
(except Article 6(5): 5.1.2008)

OJ L 3 of 5.1.2005

Related Acts

Council Decision 2004/544/EC of 21 June 2004 on the signing of the European Convention for the protection of animals during international transport (as amended) [Official Journal L 241 of 13.7.2004].
The European Convention for the protection of animals during international transports first came into force in 1971. In 1995, the contracting parties decided to bring its provisions up to date to take account of scientific developments and experience acquired in this field. The amended Convention lays down detailed rules applicable to all animal species and which reflect successive amendments to EU legislation. At present, the 15 old EU Member States are all parties to the Convention, as are Cyprus, Iceland, Norway, Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania, Russia, Switzerland and Turkey.

Council Regulation (EC) No 1255/97 of 25 June 1997 concerning Community criteria for staging points and amending the route plan referred to in the Annex to Directive 91/628/EEC [Official Journal L 174 of 2.7.1997].
The European Union lays down common criteria applicable to control posts (or “staging points”) at which animals must be unloaded during long journeys. These rules aim to secure the health and welfare of the animals during such stops.

Animal welfare

Animal welfare

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Animal welfare


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Animal welfare

Animal welfare

The European Union recognises animals as sentient beings that deserve protection. Community legislation sets minimum requirements in order to spare animals from any unnecessary suffering in three main areas: farming, transport and slaughter. It also tackles other issues, such as animal experiments and the fur trade. The 2006-2010 action plan sets out the broad outlines for European intervention in this field, both within the EU and beyond its borders.


  • Action plan on animal welfare 2006-2010


  • European Convention for the Protection of Animals kept for Farming Purposes
  • Protection of farmed animals
  • Protection of chickens kept for meat production
  • Protection of laying hens
  • The protection of pigs
  • Protection of calves intended for slaughter
  • The keeping of wild animals in zoos


  • Animal welfare during transport
  • Community standards on staging points


  • European Convention on the protection of animals at the time of slaughter
  • Protection of animals at the time of killing


  • Protection of laboratory animals
  • Cosmetic products (from 2013)
  • Cosmetic products (until 2013)
  • Ban on trade in cat and dog fur
  • Trade in seal products