Farm animal welfare under scrutiny: Issues unsolved by the EU legislator

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In the European Union (EU) innovation society, animal welfare has reached its normative status, together with the increased ethical concerns of citizens and civil society in relation to animal welfare and dignity. However, several problems are impeding welfarism from gaining full traction on the European stage.This paper aims at scrutinizing some of those legal problems, using the ongoing (2019) CAP reform and labelling issues as case studies. Is the process of the CAP reform in line with the aim of fully integrating farm animal welfare into EU agricultural policy? Is animal welfare labelling gaining ground as an ethical-legal tool that certifies the achievement of high standards in livestock farming? These are the questions explored in this contribution. Both a historical perspective of farm animal welfare in Europe and an evaluation at the international level willenrich their analysis.Thecore argument of this study posits that legal answers to the CAP post-2020 and to animal welfare labelling schemes can legitimate a more sustainable model of EU agriculture. What is needed is a model of agricultural practices capable of aligning citizens' interests with the EU animal welfarestrategy 2012-2015, whileenhancing and strengthening the Union's normative approach to animal dignity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-84
Number of pages38
JournalEuropean Journal of Legal Studies
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Animal welfare


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