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Animal Health and Welfare (16-01-2009)

Conference on Global Trade and Farm Animal Welfare, 20-21 January 2009, Brussels

Animal welfare is an important and sensitive issue which is gaining rapid momentum in the European Union and indeed beyond in the wider world. As the demand for welfare friendly products continues to increase, better animal welfare standards can lead to significant benefits, including the expansion of trade opportunities for welfare friendly products.  Indeed the demand for such products reinforces the need to promote animal welfare at global level, to include good practices and internationally shared standards.
 With this aim the European Commission (DG SANCO and DG TRADE) together with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), Eurogroup for Animals, Compassion In World Farming and World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA), has organised a Conference on Global Trade and Farm Animal Welfare to be held on 20 and 21 January 2009. Androulla Vassiliou, EU Commissioner for Health, and Petr Gandalovic, the Czech Minister for Agriculture will open the Conference. Following her opening address, Commissioner Vassiliou will participate to a press point.
The conference will be an opportunity for global stakeholders, NGOs, ministerial representatives from the EU and the major EU trading partners, international organisations such as the EU, OIE, FAO and the World Bank to engage in constructive dialogue and to establish possible partnerships and collaborations with a view to improving global animal welfare standards.
The conference follows up the International Forum on Global Aspects of Farm Animal Welfare organised by the same organisations and held on 22-23 April 2008.  
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