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Parliamentary questions
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3 February 2015
E-008277/2014(ASW)
Answer given by Mr Andriukaitis on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-008277/2014

It is primarily the Member States' responsibility to ensure the correct application of EC law. Regulation (EC) No 882/2004(1) of 29 April 2004 on official controls, provides them with the tools to put in place effective measures and sanctions to rectify discovered cases of non-compliance.

The Commission regularly audits Member States' compliance with the requirement of EU legislation on animal welfare at farms via its inspection service of Directorate General for Health and Consumers (FVO, Food and Veterinary Office), located in Grange, Ireland.

Last visits on the welfare of geese were carried out in Hungary and Austria. The conclusions of the Hungarian audit indicated that the process of removal was according to Hungarian legislation and the stress associated was minimised by an increased number of controls (official and auto-controls). Regarding Austria, live plucking of feathers is not allowed. Reports on FVO visits are available at the following website: http://ec.europa.eu/food/fvo/ir_search_en.cfm

Insofar, a systematic failure to apply EC law could not be established and therefore no measures are foreseen. The Commission will continue to monitor Member States using the tools at its disposal to ensure full compliance across the EU.

(1)http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2004:165:0001:0141:EN:PDF

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