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In 2019, more than one million people, including over 50,000 British citizens , signed the European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) calling on the European Commission to introduce a ban on caged farming. This Initiative was the biggest political push for farmed animal welfare in European history, and has resulted in a ground-breaking commitment by the European Commission to phase out the use of cages for farmed animals across Europe.

This decision is a massive step forward and will positively impact the lives of hundred of millions of animals farmed in cages. It is now vital that the UK Government maintains its position as a world leader in farm animal welfare and follows the EU in bringing an end to cruel caged farming. We need to encourage ministers and key decision makers to support a ban, to get us closer to a cage free Britain.

We have ranked each of the UK and EU’s member state by how close it is to our cage free goal, based on the percentage of cage free farm animals. You can find out how each country is performing below.

Act now by sending a tweet to your relevant minister asking them to support a ban.

66% United Kingdom

Union flag - dark blue background with red and white diagonal cross behind a red and white horizontal/vertical cross

% animals out of cages: 66%

% animals caged: 34%

Number of animals in cages: 16,492,646

Number of ECI signatures: 54,114

 

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Secretary of State for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs
George Eustice
George Eustice

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    

The League Table

Below you can find the full league table. Click on the flags to see how each country is performing, and to send a tweet to the relevant ministers, asking them to support a ban. Repeat this for as many countries as possible.

#1 Austria

#1 Austria

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Number of animals in cages: 215,498

% animals caged: 3%

Number of ECI signatures: 20,403

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Sustainability and Tourism Federal Minister of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection
Elisabeth Köstinger Wolfgang Mückstein
Elisabeth Köstinger Wolfgang Mückstein
Minister of Sustainability and Tourism
Elisabeth Köstinger
Elisabeth Köstinger
Federal Minister of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection
Wolfgang Mückstein
Rudolf Anschober

 

The general situation

Ministers' views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Ministers' Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#2 Luxembourg

#2 Luxembourg

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Number of animals in cages: 3,485

% animals caged: 3%

Number of ECI signatures: 5,510

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture, Viticulture and Rural Development
Claude Haagen
Claude Haagen

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#3 Sweden

#3 Sweden

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Number of animals in cages: 479,911

% animals caged: 5%

Number of ECI signatures: 46,378

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister for Business, Industry and Innovation
Ibrahim Baylan
Ibrahim Baylan

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#4 Germany

#4 Germany

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Number of animals in cages: 8,268,650

% animals caged: 13%

Number of ECI signatures: 474,753

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister for Food and Agriculture
Cem Özdemir
Cem Özdemir

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#5 The Netherlands

#5 The Netherlands

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Number of animals in cages: 5,922,010

% animals caged: 17%

Number of ECI signatures: 153,958

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality
Henk Staghouwer
Henk Staghouwer

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#6 Slovenia

#6 Slovenia

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Number of animals in cages: 365,703

% animals caged: 25%

Number of ECI signatures: 3,553

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Food
Dr. Jože Podgoršek
Dr. Jože Podgoršek

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#7 Belgium

#7 Belgium

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Number of animals in cages: 4,407,909

% animals caged: 31%

Number of ECI signatures: 62,397

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Brussels Minister of Animal Welfare Walloon Minister of Animal Welfare Flemish Minister of Animal Welfare
Bernard Clerfayt Céline Tellier Ben Weyts
Bernard Clerfayt Céline Tellier Ben Weyts
Brussels Minister of Animal Welfare
Bernard Clerfayt
Bernard Clerfayt
Walloon Minister of Animal Welfare
Céline Tellier
Céline Tellier
Flemish Minister of Animal Welfare
Ben Weyts
Ben Weyts

 

 

The general situation

Ministers' views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Ministers' Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#8 Denmark

#8 Denmark

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Number of animals in cages: 1,784,984

% animals caged: 32%

Number of ECI signatures: 47,336

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries
Rasmus Prehn
Rasmus Prehn

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#9 United Kingdom

#9 United Kingdom

Read more

Number of animals in cages: 16,492,646

% animals caged: 34%

Number of ECI signatures: 54,114

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Secretary of State for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs
George Eustice
George Eustice

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#10 Finland

#10 Finland

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Number of animals in cages: 2,359,236

% animals caged: 51%

Number of ECI signatures: 32,716

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Jari Leppä
Jari Leppä

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#11 Ireland

#11 Ireland

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Number of animals in cages: 2,024,494

% animals caged: 53%

Number of ECI signatures: 14,646

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine
Charlie McConalogue
Charlie McConalogue

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Ministers' Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#12 Romania

#12 Romania

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Number of animals in cages: 5,278,666

% animals caged: 58%

Number of ECI signatures: 8,308

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development
Adrian Chesnoiu
Adrian Chesnoiu

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#13 Croatia

#13 Croatia

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Number of animals in cages: 1,484,341

% animals caged: 61%

Number of ECI signatures: 12,498

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Marija Vučković
Marija Vučković

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#14 Italy

#14 Italy

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Number of animals in cages: 41,417,060

% animals caged: 63%

Number of ECI signatures: 90,085

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Health Minister of Agriculture
Roberto Speranza Stefano Patuanelli
Roberto Speranza Teresa Bellanova
Minister of Health
Roberto Speranza
Roberto Speranza
Minister of Agriculture
Stefano Patuanelli
Teresa Bellanova

 

The general situation

Ministers' views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Ministers' Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#15 France

#15 France

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Number of animals in cages: 84,856,589

% animals caged: 76%

Number of ECI signatures: 89,600

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Didier Guillaume
Didier Guillaume

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#16 Czech Republic

#16 Czech Republic

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Number of animals in cages: 5,570,578

% animals caged: 71%

Number of ECI signatures: 49,219

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Zdeněk Nekula
Zdeněk Nekula

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#17 Hungary

#17 Hungary

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Number of animals in cages: 12,328,798

% animals caged: 71%

Number of ECI signatures: 2,550

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
István Nagy
István Nagy

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#18 Cyprus

#18 Cyprus

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Number of animals in cages: 424,039

% animals caged: 73%

Number of ECI signatures: 1,610

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Health
Costas Kadis
Costas Kadis

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#19 Latvia

#19 Latvia

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Number of animals in cages: 2,507,983

% animals caged: 76%

Number of ECI signatures: 3,631

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Kaspars Gerhards
Kaspars Gerhards

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#20 Slovakia

#20 Slovakia

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Number of animals in cages: 2,464,865

% animals caged: 77%

Number of ECI signatures: 29,314

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development of the Slovak Republic
Samuel Vlčan
Samuel Vlčan

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#21 Greece

#21 Greece

Read more

Number of animals in cages: 3,956,546

% animals caged: 78%

Number of ECI signatures: 9,003

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Rural Development and Food
Giorgos Georgantas
Giorgos Georgantas

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#22 Bulgaria

#22 Bulgaria

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Number of animals in cages: 8,212,991

% animals caged: 80%

Number of ECI signatures: 17,986

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Food
Dr. Hristo Bozukov
Dr. Hristo Bozukov

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#23 Poland

#23 Poland

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Number of animals in cages: 41,951,098

% animals caged: 81%

Number of ECI signatures: 54,039

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Henryk Kowalczyk
Grzegorz Puda

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#24 Estonia

#24 Estonia

Read more

Number of animals in cages: 942,745

% animals caged: 82%

Number of ECI signatures: 3,560

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Rural Affairs
Urmas Krusse
Urmas Krusse

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#25 Lithuania

#25 Lithuania

Read more

Number of animals in cages: 2,387,703

% animals caged: 83%

Number of ECI signatures: 8,449

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Kęstutis Navickas
Kęstutis Navickas

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#26 Spain

#26 Spain

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Number of animals in cages: 88,388,145

% animals caged: 89%

Number of ECI signatures: 85,756

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture General Director of Animal Rights
Luis Planas Sergio García Torres
Luis Planas Sergio García Torres
Minister of Agriculture
Luis Planas
Luis Planas
General Director of Animal Rights
Sergio García Torres
Sergio García Torres

 

The general situation

Ministers' views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Ministers' Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#27 Portugal

#27 Portugal

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Number of animals in cages: 11,860,036

% animals caged: 89%

Number of ECI signatures: 13,948

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister of Agriculture
Luís Capoulas Santos
Luís Capoulas Santos

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    
#28 Malta

#28 Malta

Read more

Number of animals in cages: 410,962

% animals caged: 99%

Number of ECI signatures: 1,694

Who can help End the Cage Age?

Minister for Rural Policies, Fisheries, Animal Rights
Anton Refalo
Anton Refalo

 

The general situation

Minister's views on EU wide ban  
How close is this country to ending the cage age? Legislation Minister's Position
For hens    
For rabbits    
For sows (stalls)    
For sows (farrowing crates)    
For ducks and geese (foie gras)    
For quail    
For calves    

Table notes

Many factors determine if a Member State will support our ECI, including the percentage of animals still caged, national laws, and the support of key decision-makers. Some countries are close to being totally cage-free, while others still confine millions of animals with governments reluctant to bring about change.

The table is a living tool: we will update it as soon as any progress is made to end the use of cages.

On each flag, you’ll find the percentage of cage-free farmed animals and, in each pop-up, you'll find the number of animals still in cages. These numbers are calculated on the total number of each species that can be farmed in cages like sows, rabbits, ducks, geese, and hens. We are excluding quails and calves because there are no reliable figures for all Member States, although we are calling for a ban on caging both.

Table Key

Country Level

  100% of animals living cage-free
  80-99% of animals living cage-free
  40-79% of animals living cage-free
  Less than 40% of animals living cage-free

Species-Level

  Legislation Ministers' views
  Banned by law Ban supported
  Some limitations on the use of cages Possible support for a ban
  No ban No support for a ban
  No information available No reply or no information provided

Sources

Info on the percentages and caged animals

Data on annual animal numbers were taken from the following sources according to the most recent published data: Sows – Eurostat 2020; Laying Hens – EU COM CIRCABC 2020; Rabbits – European Commission (DG Santé) 2016; Ducks and Geese - ITAVI 2019 and SSP, Eurofoiegras 2019. Where published figures are not available, estimates of number of animals caged have been calculated using generic estimates and data from various credible sources.

Info about national legislation

  • End the cage age report
  • For quails – Quail – Industry and national government statistics
  • For calves
    • Reference for %ages in system Marcé, C., Guatteo, R., Bareille, N. and Fourichon, C., 2010. Dairy calf housing systems across Europe and risk for calf infectious diseases. Animal, 4(9), pp.1588-1596. except where stated otherwise
    • Reference for Czech %ages Staněk, S., Zink, V., Doležal, O. and Štolc, L., 2014. Survey of preweaning dairy calf-rearing practices in Czech dairy herds. Journal of dairy science, 97(6), pp.3973-3981
    • Reference for Bulgaria – National NGO
    • Reference for Poland – Compassion in World Farming investigation 

Updated in October 2021.

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If you have any further questions regarding this, or any other matter, please get in touch with us at supporters@ciwf.org.uk. 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).