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Agriculture and fisheries

 

Ban not just animal cloning, but cloned food, feed and imports too, say MEPs

AGRI ENVI Agriculture / Public health17-06-2015 - 17:22
World's first sheep clones. The faces of identical insMeganins and insMoragins, the world's first cloned sheep aged 9 months.  

A draft law to ban the cloning of all farm animals, their descendants and products derived from them, including imports, in the EU was voted by the Environment and Agriculture committees on Wednesday. MEPs beefed up the European Commission’s initial proposal, citing high mortality rates at all development stages of cloning and EU citizens’ animal welfare and ethical concerns. (Read more: Ban not just animal cloning, but cloned food, feed and imports too, say MEPs )

 
Animal cloning process. Illustration of the stages in cloning an animal.  

Should cloning for food be banned because of animal welfare concerns? The environment and agriculture committees vote today on amendments to a European Commission proposal to ban the cloning of farm animals in the EU. The MEPs in charge of steering the plans through Parliament support the ban, but want to add provisions on the offspring of cloned animals and the marketing of their products coming from countries outside the EU. Watch the vote live from 15.00 CET. (Read more: Cloning for food: parliamentary committees vote on plans to ban the practice )

 

An informal deal on the wording of draft EU law on transmissible animal diseases, negotiated by MEPs, the Latvian Presidency of the Council of Ministers and the European Commission, was backed by the Agriculture Committee on Wednesday. The law will merge and update many scattered items of old legislation, so as to help prevent and halt new outbreaks of animal diseases such as avian flu or African swine fever and keep pace with scientific progress. (Read more: Animal health law: Agriculture Committee backs informal deal with the Council )

 
Interview with Marit Paulsen  

A proposal to streamline and simplify complicated animal health rules in the EU was informally agreed by MEPs, the European Commission and the national governments on 1 June. Marit Paulsen, the Parliament's lead negotiator, described the result as "fantastic": "Its most important principle is to prevent rather than to cure." We talked to Paulsen, who has been pushing animal welfare issues for four decades, about her interest in animals and how the new rules will make a difference. (Read more: Animal health: "The principle is the same whether taking care of a dog or pigs" )

 
 

Measures to prevent and treat animal diseases such as avian flu or African swine fever were informally agreed by MEPs, the Latvian Presidency of the Council of Ministers and the European Commission on Monday. The draft EU law, on diseases that are transmissible among animals and potentially to humans too, will merge and update many scattered items of old legislation, so as to help prevent and halt new outbreaks and keep pace with scientific progress. (Read more: Transmissible animal diseases: MEPs and ministers strike informal deal )

 

School milk and fruit: MEPs back measures to teach healthier eating habits

Plenary Session Agriculture27-05-2015 - 19:13
Child drinking milk and eating healthy food  

Healthy eating habits start young, so the EU and its member states should do and spend more to encourage kids to eat healthy and local foods, Parliament said on Wednesday. To ensure that they get healthy eating lessons, as well as school milk, fruit, and vegetables from EU schemes, Parliament amended draft rules and approved a mandate for MEPs to negotiate their final form with EU member states. (Read more: School milk and fruit: MEPs back measures to teach healthier eating habits )

 

Five a day: how the EU will help children to learn about healthy eating

Plenary Session Agriculture26-05-2015 - 15:28
Happy children and healthy food ©BELGA_AGEFOTOSTOCK_D.Cervo  

Children are eating fewer and fewer fruit, vegetables and dairy products in Europe, but a new proposal could help them to adopt a healthier diet. Under the plan two existing EU schemes for handing out fresh milk, fruit and vegetables to pupils would be combined, reducing the administrative burden and creating more opportunities for teaching children about balanced diets. MEPs debate the plans during the plenary session on Wednesday 27 May from 17.00 CET, which will be followed by a vote. (Read more: Five a day: how the EU will help children to learn about healthy eating )

 

Olive trees: MEPs demand action to halt spread of killer bacteria

Plenary Session Agriculture20-05-2015 - 13:45

The EU must take effective measures to prevent the spread of Xylella fastidiosa bacteria beyond Italy, where it is severely damaging olive trees, says a resolution passed by Parliament on Wednesday. MEPs welcome EU import restrictions on plants from affected areas in third countries but say more may be needed. They also urge that growers be compensated for their losses, and suggest stepping up funding for research to combat the bacteria, which may attack other plants. (Read more: Olive trees: MEPs demand action to halt spread of killer bacteria )

 

Milan Expo 2015: EU must foster global food security, MEPs say

Plenary Session Agriculture30-04-2015 - 13:30
EU_EXPO_Official Participant RGB.JPG  

The EU should use the Milan Expo 2015 to encourage sustainable agronomic practices, promote fairness in the supply chain, and fight food waste and malnutrition, says a resolution voted by Parliament on Thursday, the eve of the official opening of the event. The ultimate aim of these efforts should be to strengthen global food security, it adds. (Read more: Milan Expo 2015: EU must foster global food security, MEPs say )

 

Olive trees: MEPs to demand answers on how to tackle spread of killer bacteria

Plenary Session Agriculture29-04-2015 - 16:30
The Parliament will debate on the outbreak of Xylella Fastidiosa affecting olive trees  

Parliament will quiz the Commission Thursday morning on plans to tackle the outbreak of Xylella fastidiosa bacteria, which have infected several thousand hectares of olive plantations in Italy, and prevent it spreading to other EU regions. The Commission will also be asked how any growers whose trees have to be destroyed are to be compensated. (Read more: Olive trees: MEPs to demand answers on how to tackle spread of killer bacteria )