EU – Thailand Cooperation on Animal Welfare

The EU makes available its knowledge, technology and long experience in animal welfare research to Thailand and other Asian countries, in order to assist them in developing animal welfare standards that are appropriate to local conditions.

 Bangkok, The EU Delegation to Thailand on 25 March 2014 hosted a Press Conference about EU Animal Welfare policy and its implications for Thailand during a training workshop on the subject for experts from across SE Asia. Workshop participants come from the authorities in charge of animal welfare in the ASEAN Member States, as well as in a number of other Asian countries. 

Speakers from the European Union (EU), the Thai government and private sector, and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) reviewed progress in EU – Thailand cooperation on animal welfare. The EU makes available its knowledge, technology and long experience in animal welfare research to Thailand and other Asian countries, in order to assist them in developing animal welfare standards that are appropriate to local conditions. 

The workshop, which is part of this process, is intended to increase participants' understanding of EU legislation on animal welfare and of how to implement equivalent standards in the ASEAN region, adapted to the local climate and cultural contexts. 

Dr Andrea Gavinelli (Head of Unit, Animal Welfare in the European Commission Directorate General for Health and Consumers) said that the aim of such activities was to pass on the knowledge the EU had built up over 40 years of Animal Welfare policy development. Although EU law in this field was not applicable outside the EU “it is a priority for negotiation with other countries on a cooperative basis – working with organisations like the World Organisation for Animal Health – because we believe that good animal welfare it is crucial not just for the animals but also in delivering long-term sustainability for agriculture”. 

Dr. Tritsadee Chaosuancharoen (Director General, Department of Livestock Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives) emphasised the Thai interest in cooperating with the EU in this field: “The EU has great experience in this field that can provide a transfer of know-how to serve as the basis for Thailand’s Animal Welfare standards, which must also take account of the environmental and cultural differences that apply in our country”. 

Dr. Payungsak Somyanontanakul (Vice President, Charoen Pokphand Foods PLC – CPF) said that CP Foods had applied up to date standards of animal welfare in food production for over 20 years: “From farm to consumer it also makes good sense from a food safety perspective also”. 

Dr Gardner Murray, Chair of World Organisation for Animal Health/Regional Animal Welfare Strategy noted that workshops like the BTSF event were “very important building blocks for cooperation on animal welfare”.