On animal transports, density is a major issue.
In the EU, animals are subjected to extensive and varied transport scenarios, spanning from farm-to-farm transfers, market journeys, to ports and slaughterhouses – lasting hours, days, or even weeks. For 25 years, Animals’ Angels’ investigations show the troubling reality of animals confined within cramped transport vehicles.
From horses in narrow stalls that inhibit natural movement and rest, to pigs, cattle and sheep stacked together so closely, preventing proper thermoregulation and access to water. Way too often, exhaustion and injuries are the consequence. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) asserts that transport conditions must not compromise key biological functions, including access to water and food, movement, thermoregulation, and the ability to rest in natural positions without being at risk of injury.
However, the current minimum space requirements outlined in Regulation EC 1/2005 fall short of enabling animals to fulfill these fundamental needs. If live transport is to continue, overcrowding as a major reason for animal suffering must be prevented. Animals on transport must be given adequate space for them to be able to exert their key biological functions. The regulation must also indicate to what extent space must increase in the case of variable circumstances, e. g. animals having horns, long fleece, or during high temperatures. This calculation must be easy to apply for the inspecting authorities – and shall not have any loopholes that cause misinterpretation or misapplication.