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Parliamentary questions
PDF 104kWORD 25k
29 February 2016
E-001765-16
Question for written answer E-001765-16
to the Commission
Rule 130
Anja Hazekamp (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  Importation into the EU and use of Pregnant Mare Serum Gonadotropin (PMSG) from blood farms
 Answer in writing 

PMSG is a hormone by means of which mother animals are made fertile more quickly in livestock farming. It is obtained from the blood of pregnant mares. According to animal welfare organisations, its production causes serious animal welfare problems, such as structurally excessive withdrawal of blood from mares and the squeezing to death of unborn foals(1).

PMSG is imported from non-EU countries, inter alia by Dutch businesses. The hormone is processed and used in livestock farming to fertilise animals.

1. Does the Commission acknowledge that pain and injury are structurally caused to animals in order to obtain PMSG, and can the Commission guarantee that PMSG is not produced in the EU?

2. To what extent does the use of PMSG within the EU accord with Directive 98/58/EC, which lays down that ‘natural or artificial breeding or breeding procedures which cause or are likely to cause suffering or injury to any of the animals concerned must not be practised’?

3. Can the Commission ban the use of PMSG under Directive 98/58/EC, on the grounds that suffering or injury is caused to animals outside the EU as part of the breeding procedure applied in Europe, using PMSG, or else by incorporating animal welfare as a criterion in the requirements of Good Manufacturing Practice for medicines or by restricting imports under WTO rules on animal welfare grounds as a non-trade concern?

(1)http://www.eyesonanimals.com/nl/5-november-2015-paarden-mishandeld-voor-hormoonmiddelen-in-de-nederlandse-vee-industrie

Original language of question: NL 
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