From witches to fireworks, bunnies and flying church bells - European countries have a lot of different traditions to celebrate Easter. One of them is to decorate eggs, but how safe are they really? The European Parliament has worked on different laws to ensure hens and their eggs are healthy. This includes last year's ban on the use of battery cages for hens and the use of the egg code to inform shoppers how an egg was produced. Check out our infographic for more information.
Agricultural spending accounts for about 40% of the European Union's annual budget and has been at the heart of EU policy since the very start of the European project. As the last revision of the agricultural policy dates from 2003 and 12 countries have joined the EU since then, it is clear that it must be updated in order to face new challenges. EP has now agreed what line to take and negotiations will start in earnest. Read on to find out more.
MEPs will this week decide how to reform the EU's common fisheries policy in order to put an end to overfishing while at the same time tackle unemployment in many coastal areas due to the decline of fisheries. Ahead of a debate on 5 February and vote the day after, we asked German Social Democrat Ulrike Rodust why she is calling for radical change in her recommendation to fellow MEPs.
We should not forget about farming's economic and social impact when reforming the EU's common agricultural policy, according to the EP's agricultural committee chair Paolo De Castro. The Italian Social Democrat MEP made the plea after his committee voted on plans shaping Parliament's position on the reform ahead of the EU summit on the long-term budget on 7 and 8 February, which will affect how the agriculture policy will be financed. We talked to him about why it is vital to support farmers.
The future of the EU's common agricultural policy is of vital importance to Europe, which is reflected in the record number of amendments received for proposals dealing with its reform - a hefty 8,000. Members of the EP's agriculture committee have Wednesday and Thursday to wade through the amendments. How will they manage this Herculean task? Find out by watching the vote and the press conference live by clicking on the links on the right.
Never mind what the popular Jaws films will have you believe: people pose a greater threat to sharks then they to us. Several shark species have been pushed to the brink of extinction due to fin hunters cutting the animals' fins off while they are still alive before leaving them to drown in the water. MEPs voted on 22 November to close a loophole in the current ban on shark finning, which will make it easier to catch out perpetrators of this cruel practice.
The EU should serve up a strategy to promote local and sustainable farming, according to Green MEP José Bové, who is a farmer in his native France. He has written a report in response to a Commission communication on how to promote agricultural products, which was adopted by the Parliament's agriculture committee on 18 September. We spoke with Mr Bové about how this could be achieved
There's not enough pressure on member states to apply EU rules on animal welfare, says Swedish MEP Marit Paulsen. To remedy this, the Liberal Democrat proposes in an own initiative report tighter monitoring of implementation to name and shame the offenders. MEPs approved it in plenary on Wednesday 4 July.
Stocks of Atlantic bluefin tuna have dropped dramatically since the 1990s. This week MEPs voted in favour of measures that include further reducing fishing quotas and strengthening controls over bluefin tuna fishing in the eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Spanish Green MEP Raül Romeva i Rueda says tuna sanctuaries could be the answer in his report that was adopted by MEPs on 23 May 2012.
Cocoa is not only essential to creating delicious chocolate, but it is also a commodity millions of people depend upon for their income. The European Parliament will vote this week on the 2010 International Cocoa Agreement which aims to improve market transparency and strengthen co-operation between exporting and importing countries. MEPs will also vote on a separate resolution to condemn the use of child labour for cocoa production.