Greece shortly before referral for failing to protect swine-raising pigs

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 OPEN LETTER

Press Communication of 23-01-2014, European Committee 

According to P.D. 215/2003 and the last Directive 2008/12 of the EU, with the basic rules for the protection of swine-raising pig, every EU member-state should have adapted to these rules.

The rules refer to matters like the conditions of housing, insulation, heating and ventilation, the living environment of the animals, which has to answer their needs for exercise and exploration and their non-internment in restricted areas.

Specifically at to swine mothers, according to the Directive it is prohibited that they are constantly kept in narrow spaces.

Moreover, the Directive mentions that, the partial docking of the tail, the cutting-off of the teeth and the drilling of the teeth can possibly cause pain to the pigs immediately, as well as prolonged pain later.

Castration can possibly cause prolonged pain, which becomes worse if there is tissue rupture. These practices are therefore against the well-being of the pigs, especially when not specialized or inexperienced persons are used.

The conditions under which swine rearers house these animals and the practices they follow are far from the aforementioned standards.

The Press Communication of 23-01-2014 of the European Committee mentions that, while in February 2013 a request was sent to Greece for conforming, in particular as to the living conditions of swine mother, and while there had been a 12 year transition period, our country has not conformed to the European Directive and if this does not happen within more or less two months, our country will be referred to the Court of the European Union.

Because we have experienced this non-conforming situation before, in regard to the hen cage rows, when Greece was sentenced to paying a fine, we are wondering which interests or client relations exist behind this situation. Are these interests more important than our country’s image and, of course, the well-being of the animals?

Our Federation will try to meet people from the competent Ministry of Agricultural Development and Foods, in order to be informed about the measures the ministry intends to take for the living conditions of these animals and practices of castration etc used by swine rearers in the Greece of Europe, before sending a letter to the competent committee of the European Parliament.

The Pan-Hellenic Animal Welfare and Environment Federation