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May 12, 2014

EBRD Sets Milestone for Animal Welfare: Adopts Rules to Stop Financing Extreme Confinement of Farm Animals

Humane Society International, FOUR PAWS, Compassion in World Farming

  • Bradley Murray/istock

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) updated its Environmental and Social Policy (ESP) to ensure that projects meet or exceed European Union animal welfare laws when funding agribusiness projects. This is the first time that an international finance institution has adopted binding animal welfare criteria for investments. The revised standards follow a report published last year by the Humane Society International, Compassion in World Farming and Four Paws that exposed numerous investments in extreme farm animal confinement practices in non-EU countries.
Joanna Swabe, Ph.D., EU director of Humane Society International, issued the following statement: “The extreme confinement of farm animals is at odds with EU values, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has taken an important step to aligning its investments with those values. We encourage EU Member States to ensure all international finance institutions use their funds to improve, not harm, animal welfare.”

Nina Jamal, International Farm Animals Campaigner at FOUR PAWS, added: “The EBRD rightly concluded that financing animal suffering must be a thing of the past. We call on other international finance institutions such as the International Finance Corporation to follow this example in their current policy reviews.”

Joyce D’Silva, Ambassador for Compassion in World Farming, stated: “Compassion in World Farming welcomes EBRD’s commitment to implementing EU animal welfare standards in funding livestock operations. However factory farming, even to EU standards, is still a flawed model of food production. It is deeply reliant on monoculture-based crops; it wastes human-edible food; it cannot meet the needs of sentient animals and it perpetuates unhealthy over-consumption of meat.”

Media Contact:

Nicolas Entrup, Consultant to Humane Society International, M: +43/660/211 99 63, n.entrup@shiftingvalues.com

Melitta Töller, FOUR PAWS Press Office, T: +49/40/399249 66, M: +49/160/90559483, melitta.toeller@vier-pfoten.org

Jon Bennett, Compassion in World Farming, 0044 1483 521952 and 0044 7584 683485 gevans@hsi.org

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