Renowned ethologist and conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall has joined forces with 140 other scientists to call for an end to cages on European farms. The scientists signed a letter to the European Commission, arguing that more humane alternatives now exist.
The letter was inspired by a recent European Citizens’ Initiative called “End the Cage Age”, which was signed by 1.4 million people. It argues that caged animals are denied the natural behaviours that make life worth living, and that the use of cages contradicts the EU’s recognition that animals are sentient beings.
The scientists are calling for the elimination of all types of cages, including “enriched” cages for egg-laying hens, farrowing crates for pigs, sow stalls, calf pens, and more.
In June of last year, Jane Goodall told EU politicians that “humanity will be finished” if we don’t radically change our food system. But recently, the European Parliament’s support for animal welfare has been mixed, with a ruling last October voting to continue subsidising factory farms.
“We are proud to have Dr. Jane Goodall and all the other scientists on board to support an end to the use of cages in animal farming,” said Olga Kikou, Head of Compassion in World Farming EU. “The ‘End the Cage Age’ campaign has the backing of over 170 European organisations, dozens of Members of the European Parliament, the European Committee of the Regions, and 1.4 million EU citizens. All that is left now is for the Commission to respond by updating the outdated EU Directive 98/58/EC on the protection of animals kept for farming purposes, in order to bring it in line with the latest science and the expectations of the EU public.”