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Parliamentary questions
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13 May 2015
Question for written answer E-007758-15
to the Commission
Rule 130
Jeppe Kofod (S&D)

 Subject:  Painful hammer-tattooing of pigs
 Answer in writing 

The East Jutland section of the Danish Broadcasting Corporation's website contains an article about farmers being forced, on traceability grounds, to hammer-tattoo their pigs immediately prior to slaughter. The pigs are struck repeatedly with a metal hammer, to which two-centimetre nails are affixed, in order to tattoo a five-digit code onto their skin. The process is clearly both painful and stressful for the animals, and may be dangerous for the farmer who has to do the tattooing.

1. What is the legislative basis for this practice, and does the Commission regard it as compatible with good animal welfare?

2. Is the Commission familiar with possible alternatives to this painful practice, and, if so, will it seek to phase out hammer-tattooing?

3. What action does the Commission intend to take to ensure that an end is put to this painful and dangerous practice as quickly as possible?

Original language of question: DA 
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