Search icon

European Parliament press launch of '8 hours' PETITION

News Section Icon Published 14/01/2009

On Wednesday 14 January, MEPs and Compassion in World Farming gather in Strasbourg to launch the Europe-wide petition to stop live animals being transported for more than eight hours to slaughter.

Danish Social Democrat Dan Jørgensen, Richard Corbett from the British Labour Party and Swedish Green Party Jens Holm, want to put pressure on the European Commission:

"We need better regulation to protect animals from suffering during transport and today we ask the European public to help us create that pressure. We hope to collect one million signatures on the internet," says Dan Jørgensen.

These signatures will be submitted to the European Agriculture Ministers, prior to the revision of the EU Transport Regulation later this year.

Every year, millions of animals are transported huge distances across Europe only to be slaughtered at journey's end. Packed into overcrowded trucks, animals are often given no - or far too little - food, water or rest. As the journeys progress, the animals become increasingly exhausted and dehydrated. Some succumb to heat stress and can be seen desperately panting and gasping for air. In the worst cases, many die.

Richard Corbett says: "A common rule for the common market that clearly and simply limits the transportation of farm animals for slaughter to eight hours would be a huge step forward for animal welfare. Many would wish to go further but I am convinced that this is a proposal with a realistic chance of adoption."

The 2004 Opinion of the Scientific Panel on Animal Health and Welfare of the European Food Safety Authority stressed that animal transport should "be avoided wherever possible and journeys should be as short as possible". This recommendation is, however, not reflected in the current EU legislation.

"Millions of animals are transported between the European countries every year. A limit on eight hours would be a great and feasible step forward," says Jens Holm.

Compassion in World Farming is delighted to support the MEPs and their petition calling for an EU-wide limit of eight hours on journeys to slaughter.

We believe that the long distance transport of animals to slaughter should be brought to an end. Animals should be slaughtered as near as possible to the farm of rearing; the meat can then be transported to wherever it is wanted.

If you agree, please sign the petition on

Take action

Achieving legal recognition of animals as sentient beings (capable of feeling pain and distress) is just one of the things that our supporters have helped us achieve so far. Your donation could help end all forms of farm animal cruelty and help us stop factory farming in its tracks.

We receive no government funding so rely entirely on the generosity of our supporters to prevent cruelty to farm animals all over the world.

Donate now >>


You are using an outdated browser which we do not support. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security.

If you have any further questions regarding this, or any other matter, please get in touch with us at We aim to respond to all queries within two working days. However, due to the high volume of correspondence that we receive, it may occasionally take a little longer. Please do bear with us if this is the case. Alternatively, if your query is urgent, you can contact our Supporter Engagement Team on +44 (0)1483 521 953 (lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm).