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Lack of MP support for Sustainable Livestock Bill

News Section Icon Published 12/11/2010

Compassion worked closely with leading environmental and sustainability organisations Friends of the Earth and Sustain to encourage MPs to support the Sustainable Livestock and Public Bodies (Sustainable Food) Bills at their Second Reading.

Robert Flello MP's Sustainable Livestock Bill received a five-hour debate. However, it failed to go to a vote when only 62 against 29 MPs requested one. 100 MPs would have needed to support a vote in order for one to be granted. As this wasn't the case, the Bill has not been allowed to progress through to Committee Stage.

Joan Walley MP's Public Bodies (Sustainable Food) Bill received neither debating time nor a vote.

Both Bills will be allocated new Second Reading dates in the New Year, but unfortunately neither will now be guaranteed debating time.

What would have happened if another 38 MPs had been present?

If the Sustainable Livestock Bill had passed into law, the government would have had to produce a strategy to improve the sustainability of UK animal farming.

Factory farming is unsustainable. As well as being the single biggest cause of animal suffering, it is an inefficient use of resources. Factory farming is dependent on feeding cereals and soya to animals, but much of these crops' food value is lost during conversion from plant to animal matter. This is a wasteful use not just of these crops but of the land, water and fossil fuel energy used to grow them.

Compassion believes that this crucial Bill should have been allowed to progress through Parliament and resulted in much-needed legislation in order to ensure the sustainability of the British livestock sector.

Who attended and how did they vote?




Abbott, Ms Diane
Alexander, Heidi
Ali, Rushanara
Bain, Mr William
Bone, Mr Peter
Brake, Tom
Brooke, Annette
Brown, Lyn
Caton, Martin
Clark, Katy
Coaker, Vernon
Connarty, Michael
Corbyn, Jeremy
Cryer, John
Curran, Margaret
Docherty, Thomas
Dowd, Jim
Durkan, Mark
Efford, Clive
Ellison, Jane
Farrelly, Paul
Field, Mr Mark
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flello, Robert
Flynn, Paul
Godsiff, Mr Roger
Goldsmith, Zac
Goodman, Helen
Heald, Mr Oliver
Hillier, Meg
Hodgson, Mrs Sharon
Hoey, Kate
Hollobone, Mr Philip
Horwood, Martin
Hunt, Tristram
Jackson, Glenda
Johnson, Joseph
Jones, Graham
Kaufman, Sir Gerald
Keen, Alan
Knight, Mr Greg
Lucas, Caroline
McCabe, Steve
McCarthy, Kerry
McDonnell, John
Morrice, Graeme (Livingston)
Onwurah, Chi
Paisley, Ian
Pound, Stephen
Reid, Mr Alan
Robinson, Mr Geoffrey
Ruddock, Joan
Slaughter, Mr Andy
Smith, Mr Andrew
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Spellar, Mr John
Thornberry, Emily
Umunna, Mr Chuka
Walley, Joan
Whitehead, Dr Alan
Williamson, Chris
Wright, David
Adams, Nigel
Blunt, Mr Crispin
Burstow, Paul
Chope, Mr Christopher
Clark, Greg
Ellis, Michael
Gauke, Mr David
Gibb, Mr Nick
Greening, Justine
Hands, Greg
Hart, Simon
Harvey, Nick
Heath, Mr David
Hurd, Mr Nick
Jenkin, Mr Bernard
Kawczynski, Daniel
Kelly, Chris
Lewis, Brandon
Lidington, Mr David
Menzies, Mark
Newmark, Mr Brooks
Newton, Sarah
Nuttall, Mr David
Paice, Mr James
Penrose, John
Randall, Mr John
Reckless, Mark
Rees-Mogg, Jacob
Vara, Mr Shailesh

Has anything been achieved?

Yes - both the public and parliamentary debates around the Bill have been helpful in raising the profile of the need for more sustainability in British livestock farming. The Bill has been successful in putting the issue on the political agenda, where we will work to ensure it stays firmly.

We are pleased to hear the Agriculture Minister Jim Paice expressing the government's commitment to the sustainability of livestock farming. We welcome his proposal of a multi-stakeholder conference on sustainability to be organised in the New Year.

Compassion in World Farming also feels encouraged by the number of MPs across parties who expressed their concern about the mega-dairy being proposed by Nocton Dairies Limited in Lincolnshire. We believe that plans for the UK's largest dairy farm poses a giant threat to animal welfare and all those who believe that humane and sustainable farming is the only viable way to feed our planet.


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