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Procedure : 2019/2616(RSP)
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Documentencyclus : O-000001/2019

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O-000001/2019 (B8-0015/2019)

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PV 14/03/2019 - 16
CRE 14/03/2019 - 16

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Volledig verslag van de vergaderingen
Donderdag 14 maart 2019 - Straatsburg Herziene uitgave

16. Dierenwelzijnsregels in de aquacultuur (debat)
Video van de redevoeringen

  Der Präsident. – Als nächster Punkt der Tagesordnung folgt die Aussprache über die Anfrage zur mündlichen Beantwortung an die Kommission über Vorschriften bezüglich des Wohlergehens von Tieren in der Aquakultur von John Flack, Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Arne Gericke, Fredrick Federley, Ivo Vajgl, Karin Kadenbach, Pirkko Ruohonen-Lerner, Julie Ward, Marco Zullo, Eleonora Evi, Michèle Rivasi, Stelios Kouloglou, Sven Giegold, Bart Staes, Keith Taylor, Michela Giuffrida, Paul Brannen, Pavel Poc, David Martin, Stefan Eck, Sirpa Pietikäinen, Jacqueline Foster, Tilly Metz, Davor Škrlec, Georgi Pirinski, Tonino Picula, Jiří Pospíšil, Tunne Kelam, Zdzisław Krasnodębski, Kosma Złotowski, Isabella De Monte, Anja Hazekamp, Kostas Chrysogonos, Klaus Buchner, Pascal Durand, Younous Omarjee, Jill Evans, Guillaume Balas, Dominique Bilde (O-000001/2019 - B8-0015/2019) - (2019/2616(RSP)).


  Eleonora Evi, autrice. – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, i recenti risultati degli studi scientifici ci indicano che i pesci sono animali senzienti: hanno una natura complessa e un ricco mondo sensoriale e possono provare emozioni, ma non solo, hanno anche importanti abilità cognitive. Purtroppo però, forse proprio per la loro complessità e misteriosità, i pesci sono stati sempre sottovalutati, addirittura spesso ignorati ed esclusi dalla protezione garantita invece ad altre categorie di animali.

I pesci rappresentano anche la tipologia di animali più sfruttata e utilizzata in assoluto. Per dare l'idea del fenomeno, secondo alcune stime sarebbero 111 miliardi i pesci catturati e 1,7 miliardi i pesci allevati in acquacoltura. Questi sono dati riferiti solo all'Unione europea. Personalmente io mi trovo quasi in difficoltà ad assimilare e razionalizzare l'entità di queste cifre. Alla luce di tutto ciò, abbiamo una forte responsabilità nei loro confronti, la stessa che abbiamo verso gli altri animali.

Tuttavia la normativa sul benessere dei pesci è minima, e siamo ben lontani dall'attuare le misure necessarie per garantire il rispetto degli standard internazionali ed europei sul benessere animale. Lo confermano i numerosi pareri dell'EFSA (pareri scientifici che la nostra Agenzia ha redatto), le ripetute prove dell'inadeguatezza dell'attuazione del regolamento (CE) n. 1/2005 sul trasporto degli animali vivi e del regolamento (CE) n. 1099/2009 relativo alla protezione degli animali durante l'abbattimento, e anche uno studio della stessa Commissione europea realizzato l'anno scorso.

A fronte di quanto appena illustrato la non azione della Commissione non è più giustificabile. Abbiamo bisogno di standard oggettivi e basati sulla scienza, abbiamo bisogno di elevati standard europei. La possibilità di stabilire dei requisiti minimi attraverso misure volontarie a livello degli Stati membri e su iniziativa dell'industria stessa ha finora portato a ben pochi passi avanti e quel poco che è stato fatto a tratti è anche deludente.

Sulla base di queste riflessioni, noi invitiamo quindi la Commissione europea ad introdurre degli standard uniformi sul benessere animale dei pesci e a vegliare affinché le normative europee vengano effettivamente rispettate ed attuate.


  Neven Mimica, Member of the Commission. – Mr President, fish are sentient beings indeed. It is true that they are quite different from other farm species, but they are also able to suffer and feel pain.

That is our starting point for this discussion. I understand that there is a growing concern for the welfare of farmed fish in the European Union. In recent years, to meet an increasing consumer demand, fish farming has intensified for some species in Europe. As the production process is intensified, it has the potential to generate new issues relating to animal welfare, notwithstanding the fact that the public also wants healthy and ethically-produced food.

In this context, you wonder why the Commission has not yet proposed specific pieces of legislation on the welfare of farmed fish. Firstly, I should clarify that the European Union animal welfare legislation already covers farmed fish at different stages of production — farming, transport and slaughter.

Secondly, I want to assure you that the Commission takes the welfare of farmed fish seriously. Let me outline some of the steps we have taken, particularly under the current Commission’s mandate to promote farmed fish welfare.

Based on the 2012 EU strategy for the protection and welfare of animals, the Commission mandated a comprehensive study on the welfare of fish during transport and at the time of slaughter. The study was published in November 2017 and led to today’s oral question.

The study concluded that in the countries analysed, the transport of fish was in line with the international standards of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), and as you know, the OIE is the international standard-setting organisation for animal welfare. The study also acknowledged that there was room for improvement when it comes to the slaughter of certain fish species.

In March 2018, based on this study, the Commission adopted a report on the possibility of introducing certain requirements regarding the protection of fish at the time of killing. The 2018 report concludes that, at this stage, it is not appropriate to propose specific requirements on the welfare of fish at the time of killing. The report indeed considers that improving the welfare of farmed fish could be more easily achieved by voluntary measures.

This conclusion is reached on the basis of the consideration that in recent years the industry has introduced improvements in this regard. We are moving in the right direction. In particular, I would like to highlight a number of important points which we should keep in mind when debating the issue.

Firstly, EU aquaculture is relatively new compared to other animal products and systems. Technology to improve the welfare of farmed fish is still developing.

Secondly, the sector is a very diverse. The main farmed species — salmon, trout, carp, sea bass and sea bream — are biologically very different. Each species requires important effort in research and development.

Thirdly, furthermore the sector differs in size and geographical coverage, with a variety of practices across Member States. In this context, having a harmonised approach might be more complex than it appears.

In light of these considerations, I think that Member States might be more suited to developing good practices in their national context. Nevertheless, the Commission continues to work on the welfare of farmed fish. Allow me to give you some practical examples of these efforts.

In 2018, the issue of fish welfare was put on the agenda of the two meetings of the EU animal welfare platform, which gather all key EU stakeholders related to animal welfare. In November 2018, the European Court of Auditors published a special report on animal welfare. They recommend in particular performing an evaluation of the strategy. Later this year, the Commission will launch an evaluation of the strategy.

I can assure you that the issue of farm fish will be part of the evaluation. In the meantime, the Commission will continue to monitor the situation and promote dialogue between stakeholders on this issue.


  Jiří Pospíšil, za skupinu PPE. – Pane komisaři, já jsem také spolupodepsal tuto ústní otázku o stavu akvakultury a ochraně ryb. Musím říci, že Vaše odpověď mě příliš neuspokojila. Byla velmi obecná a alibistická. Já si myslím, že praxe začíná ukazovat, že nám zde chybí určitá právní regulace nakládání s rybami jako s živými tvory. Podobná debata se zde vedla před několika týdny na téma transportu zvířat po Evropě. Podobné téma se bude řešit také pravděpodobně na podzim tohoto roku, kdy iniciativa občanů sesbírá milion podpisů pro to, aby Komise začala řešit otázku klecových chovů v Evropě. Jinými slovy, tato Komise bohužel pro postavení a ochranu zvířat, ať již savců nebo ryb, mnoho neudělala. Budu doufat, že Komise, která vzejde po příštích volbách, tomuto tématu bude věnovat větší pozornost, protože zvířata jsou živé bytosti a my bychom při jejich transportu, nakládání a usmrcování měli toto respektovat a měli bychom s nimi humánně nakládat. Takže odpověď byla obecná, doufám, že příště bude lepší.


  Andrejs Mamikins, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, the morality of human beings is judged on how they treat animals. It is disappointing that, in the European Union, we still do not have a mechanism to protect fish welfare in a coherent way throughout all the Member States. At the same time, we have good practices that may serve the Commission’s efforts in identifying improvements.

Europe is still a place where numerous compromising aquaculture practices take place – handling, transport, genetic manipulation, predation, stress provocation and inhuman slaughter. At the same time, I believe that EU consumers have the right to be guaranteed that the fish reaching their tables is the product of high-quality aquaculture. I sincerely hope that the Commission is going to close the knowledge gaps related to fish welfare, organise a consultation with stakeholders and develop a reliable road map. In the light of developing techniques of fish breeding, regulations adopted in 2005 and 2009 can no longer guarantee a high level of fish welfare, and I join the signatories of this oral question in asking for EU-wide legislative requirements in aquaculture.

Guaranteeing fish welfare implies certain challenges and requires flexibility. Some practices that result in positive welfare for one type of fish may negatively affect other species. That is why we cannot expect to improve welfare for aquaculture species with prescriptive standards. We must apply different criteria to small farmers and to huge aquaculture companies. For example, small producers observe fish better and are much more attentive to signs of stress. Negligence towards stress of fish can lead to outbreaks of disease and serious losses.

Per capita, the yearly consumption of fish in Europe is 27 kg, and this predicted to increase. Over the past decade, aquaculture has become the fastest-growing food production sector in the world, and we must take that into account.


  Ivan Jakovčić, u ime kluba ALDE. – Gospodine predsjedavajući, poštovani gospodine povjereniče, i Hrvatska je jedna od onih zemalja koja ima dugotrajna iskustva u uzgoju riba, u akvakulturi. Desetljećima se to čini u Hrvatskoj i u regiji u kojoj sam ja bio, u Istri, postoje uzgajališta brancina, postoje uzgajališta školjaka i dobro mi je poznato što sve kompanije čine da bi zaista pokazale da im je stalo do dobrobiti riba, do dobrobiti životinja koje uzgajaju. Naime, treba reći da nema nikakve sumnje da će upravo uzgajališta biti mjesta odakle ćemo sve više dobivati ribu na naš stol. Sve manje će biti izlovljene ribe, sve više će biti ribe iz uzgajališta, a djelomično smo i sami krivi jer imamo plastično more oko nas, plastične oceane oko nas i očito je da ćemo se morati potruditi napraviti takva uzgajališta u kojima ćemo zaista moći uzgajati ta čuvstvena bića, te ribe koje svi volimo, na način primjeren današnjem vremenu. Zato vjerujem da i sve ove napore koje želimo ovdje uložiti ovim pitanjem, upozoriti na uzgoj, klanje, prijevoz i sve one elemente koji čine život ribe, mislim da je vrlo važno da Komisija zaista stvori jedinstveni sustav, jedinstveni zakon koji će omogućiti onda cijeloj Europskoj uniji, a i onima koji surađuju s nama da uzgajaju ribe na način na koji mi mislimo da to treba biti.


  Tilly Metz, au nom du groupe Verts/ALE. – Monsieur le Président, le plus grand défi à ce sujet, ce ne sont ni les poissons, ni les pratiques cruelles qu’on leur inflige. En effet, il existe déjà des solutions. Le défi, c’est de sensibiliser notre Parlement, les décideurs politiques, mais aussi tous ceux et toutes celles qui m’écoutent en ce moment, car il s’agit de redécouvrir les poissons, de les voir dans leur complexité, qui a longtemps été niée.

Aujourd’hui, nous savons que les poissons sont, eux aussi, sensibles à la douleur, établissent des liens entre eux et collaborent pour se protéger et se nourrir. Mais voilà, dans l’aquaculture, ils sont traités par millions comme des objets. Ils sont entassés dans des eaux de mauvaise qualité, ils contractent des maladies et sont infectés par des parasites, ils manquent d’oxygène, ils sont traités avec des médicaments et des hormones, ils sont stressés et manipulés. Dans ces espaces restreints, ils se blessent et s’agressent. Ces prisons ne leur permettent pas de se comporter normalement. Le jour de leur mort, on les retire brutalement de l’eau, ils suffoquent, on leur ouvre le ventre, alors que leur cœur bat encore.

Ces êtres sensibles et bien plus complexes que nous l’imaginions, quand allons-nous les traiter plus dignement? Je prie vivement la Commission de proposer de nouveaux textes qui tiennent compte des réalités cruelles, actuelles, constatées dans l’aquaculture et des découvertes des scientifiques sur ces êtres fantastiques que sont les poissons.


  Stefan Eck, im Namen der GUE/NGL-Fraktion. – Herr Präsident! Obwohl in der EU pro Jahr bis zu 1,7 Milliarden Fische in Aquafarmen geschlachtet werden, existieren keine vernünftigen Rechtsvorschriften zum Schutz dieser Tiere. Fische werden immer noch auf grausame Weise ohne ausreichende oder gar keine Betäubung geschlachtet. In den Hirnen der meisten empathielosen Politikern in diesem Hause, in der Kommission und im Rat wurden und werden sie als empfindungslose und niedere Lebensform angesehen.

Anscheinend sind alle Erkenntnisse der Biologie am Denkorgan dieser Damen und Herren spurlos vorübergezogen. In Anbetracht meiner Erfahrungen habe ich wenig Hoffnung, dass überhaupt ein politischer Wille für greifende Rechtsvorschriften vorhanden ist. Wenn es um Tiere geht, stellt sich die Kommission doch blind und taub. Aber Tierquälerei ist in allen Mitgliedstaaten zumindest auf dem Papier ein Straftatbestand. Somit ist es kriminell, wie die Kommission, die offensichtlich am Gängelband der Fischereiindustrie geht, diese Tierart bis heute behandelt. Ich appelliere an Sie, nun endlich Gehirn und Herz, sofern vorhanden, einzuschalten und einen Vorstoß zu wagen, damit Fische wenigstens Mindeststandards zu ihrem Schutz erhalten.


  Eleonora Evi, a nome del gruppo EFDD. – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, riprendo la parola questa volta a nome del mio gruppo politico e del Movimento 5 stelle. Riporto le opinioni dei cittadini europei, perché il 79 % dei cittadini vuole che i pesci siano meglio protetti di quanto lo siano attualmente e che venga loro esteso almeno il livello di protezione che già garantiamo ad altri animali di cui molti si nutrono.

Inoltre ben nove persone su dieci ritengono che l'abbattimento in assenza di dolore sia un aspetto essenziale del benessere dei pesci e quindi questi mi sembrano dei dati inequivocabili che la Commissione non può più ignorare.

In secondo luogo, ci sono altre cose che non devono essere ignorate: ci sono delle considerazioni di salute pubblica. Gli animali che sono tenuti in condizioni insoddisfacenti in strutture sovraffollate sono animali stressati, che si ammalano più facilmente, e tutto ciò porta ad un uso maggiore di sostanze chimiche, di antibiotici, per affrontare e contenere i focolai delle malattie.

In terzo luogo, la mancanza di standard sul benessere animale ha anche diverse conseguenze dal punto di vista ambientale. Mi riferisco, ad esempio, alle fioriture algali, alla creazione delle cosiddette zone morte, delle vere e proprie zone morte vicino ai siti di acquacoltura, quindi con possibili effetti sulle risorse ittiche naturali e sulla biodiversità.

Insomma, è ora di attivarsi. Io credo che la Commissione europea dovrebbe fare di più. La risposta che ci ha dato il Commissario è insoddisfacente. Ci sono molte cose che si possono fare, oltre ovviamente a inserire delle norme più rigorose e applicare quelle esistenti: si potrebbe anche, ad esempio, incaricare l'EFSA di elaborare pareri sullo stress e sulla salute e la produttività dei pesci, si potrebbe finanziare la ricerca per sviluppare degli indicatori di benessere per le specie usate in acquacoltura e si potrebbe stabilire, ad esempio, anche un centro di riferimento per il benessere degli animali e dei pesci.

In conclusione, non posso che essere anche molto insoddisfatta e rattristata dal fatto che questa stessa Aula ha deciso di non fare neanche una risoluzione politica per mettere nero su bianco quello che oggi ci stiamo dicendo.


  André Elissen, namens de ENF-Fractie. – Voorzitter, dank voor het woord. Op initiatief van mijn partij werd er in Nederland vanaf 2010 een begin gemaakt met de oprichting van een dierenpolitie. De dierenpolitie treedt op tegen mensen die dieren verwaarlozen en mishandelen, en proberen ook dierenleed te voorkomen. Ook de straffen voor dierenmishandeling, stroperij en vergelijkbare overtredingen en misdaden zijn de afgelopen jaren verhoogd. Daarnaast is er een speciaal telefoonnummer geopend, genaamd "1 4 4", om dierenleed te kunnen melden. De mensen achter dit meldpunt zorgen ervoor dat de melding bij de juiste instantie terechtkomt. In totaal zijn er enkele honderden agenten actief in het bestrijden van dierenleed. Na enkele jaren is gebleken dat het aantal meldingen van dierenmishandeling is toegenomen, en dat meer en meer overtreders worden aangepakt. Kortom, een goede zaak.

De indieners van de vragen aan de Europese Commissie geven dus terecht aan dat er in verschillende lidstaten voorbeelden zijn van effectief dierenwelzijnsbeleid. Zoals ik zojuist vertelde is Nederland wat dat betreft op de goede weg. Natuurlijk zijn er altijd verbeteringen mogelijk. Maar de basis staat.

Het gebeurt niet vaak, maar ik moet hier toch een compliment maken aan de Commissie. Kennelijk heeft men eindelijk het licht gezien en daalt het besef in dat niet alles in Brussel of hier in Straatsburg moet worden geregeld. En dat, Voorzitter, is precies hoe het zou moeten gaan. De Nederlandse kiezer bepaalt hoe het beleid ten aanzien van dierenwelzijn zou moeten zijn. Het is een bevoegdheid van de nationale parlementen en daar moet de Europese Unie zich absoluut niet mee bemoeien. Nationale parlementen zijn heel goed in staat om dit zelf te regelen. Natuurlijk kunnen landen onderling uitstekend, goede ideeën en praktijken delen. Daar hebben ze de EU niet voor nodig. Respecteer de soevereiniteit van de lidstaten. Laat landen zelf bepalen welke maatregelen ze al dan niet willen invoeren. Laat het over aan de mensen zelf, zelfregulering en de brancheorganisaties.


  Ana Miranda (Verts/ALE). – Senhor Presidente, no meu país, o peixe é mais que um alimento, é um símbolo nacional. Por isso, eu estou muito preocupada com esta questão porque um dos problemas de fundo é que a Europa tem que decidir entre que modelos de pesca quer, seja pesca sustentável ou aquacultura intensiva ou extensiva.

Eu sou a favor da aquacultura extensiva porque as instalações na aquacultura intensiva não cumprem muitas vezes condições adequadas para ter peixes saudáveis. Pela produtividade, fomentam-se modelos de aquicultura intensiva que usam antibióticos e hormonas que stressam os peixes. O abate dos peixes faz-se com rapidez para obter benefícios e esses benefícios estão muitas vezes concentrados em poucas mãos, ao contrário da aquacultura extensiva, Senhor Comissário, que é a apanha de marisco ou as instalações de aquicultura de pequena escala, que dão, além disso, muito trabalho.

Entre os dois modelos, creio também que a Comissão deveria, nos futuros fundos europeus, no futuro Fundo Europeu Marítimo de Pesca, lutar pelo bem-estar animal dos peixes, mas também proteger um outro modelo de aquicultura extensiva alternativo a este modelo stressante, a este modelo que usa antibióticos, a este modelo que faz este tipo de abate dos peixes e que provoca perguntas como estas.


  Anja Hazekamp (GUE/NGL). – Voorzitter, vissen hebben bewustzijn en gevoel. Ze kunnen pijn lijden, en angst en stress ervaren. En lijden, dat doen ze volop in de Europese aquacultuur, wat natuurlijk niets anders is dan intensieve vissenhouderij.

Europese visfokkerijen slachten jaarlijks ruim anderhalf miljard vissen. Op zee leggen nog eens drie triljoen vissen het loodje. En de manier waarop is gruwelijk. Vrijwel alle vissen worden onverdoofd geslacht en voeren een lange, lange doodstrijd. Kabeljauwen kunnen urenlang bij bewustzijn blijven op ijs of in de lucht. Palingen laten we creperen in zoutbaden.

De Commissie zou al in 2014 met voorstellen komen om hier een einde aan te maken. Dat is niet gebeurd. Er kwamen wel wat rapportjes waarin u zegt dat het slecht gesteld is met het welzijn van vissen in Europa. Daar blijft het echter bij. Wanneer kunnen wij concrete maatregelen verwachten?

Aan uw rapporten en uw evaluaties hebben deze dieren namelijk helemaal niets. Ook daarom vind ik dat de Europese landbouw- én visserijsubsidies moeten worden afgeschaft.


Spontane Wortmeldungen


  Seán Kelly (PPE). – A Uachtaráin, is dóigh liom gur fiú an cheist seo a phlé. Agus tugaim moladh do na Feisirí Flack agus Evi as ucht an cheist a chur, agus mar a dúirt an Coimisinéir, bunaithe ar thaighde agus staidéar atá déanta acu le cúig bliana anuas. Agus is dócha go raibh baint ag mo chomhghleacaí Éireannach thíos ansin, an tréadlia Kilgallen, leis an taighde sin.

Gan dabht ar bith, tá éileamh níos mó, bliain i ndiaidh bliana, ar éisc agus níl siad ar fáil go fiáin. Dá bhrí sin, tá na feirmeacha éisc ag fás gach uile bhliain agus is saghas tionscadal nua é, mar a dúirt an Coimisinéir. Dá bhrí sin, caithfimid a bheith an-chúramach go mbeidh an caighdeán is airde in sna feirmeacha sin. Níl an dara rogha againn, agus freisin, mar a dúirt an Coimisinéir, cúramach freisin nuair a bhíonn siad ag taisteal nó á n—iompar ó fheirmeacha go monarchana, agus go háirithe agus iad á gcur chun báis, go ndéanfar é gan fulaingt rómhór orthu.


  Ангел Джамбазки (ECR). – Г-н Председател, уважаеми колеги, нека да поздравим колегата за повдигнатия много важен въпрос. Той ни дава много отговори. В залата на Европейския парламент дебатираме, обсъждаме за чувствата, емоциите, нараняването на рибите. И после се питаме защо има и така сериозен скептицизъм в част от гражданите на Европейския съюз.

Когато те наблюдават този дебат, за тях може би ще бъде изключително интересно и важно да научат какви са точно емоциите на рибите в даден момент. И тогава те си задават въпроса защо плащат данъци и с техните данъци какво правим ние в тази зала – занимаваме се с чувства, емоции на риби. Сигурно е полезно. Аз бих наблегнал повече на интересите, на правата, на очакванията на нашите съграждани да работим за тяхното благосъстояние и за техния начин на живот, а не толкова да се интересуваме от емоции на риби.


(Ende der spontanen Wortmeldungen)


  Neven Mimica, Member of the Commission. – Mr President, I have listened with great interest to this discussion and I am grateful for your valuable insights. It is clear that the welfare of farm fish presents many challenges and I am thankful we had the opportunity to discuss this issue. So where do we go from here?

Firstly, we need to develop scientific knowledge to better understand the needs of the different species at various stages of production. Secondly, we need to take into account the variety of the production systems in the European Union, which range from big industrial farms to small or medium sized companies.Thirdly, we need to engage with the industry, NGOs and the scientific community, in a constructive dialogue.

The goal here is to find sustainable and coherent solutions to the issues facing EU aquaculture today, including those relating to the environment, animal health, the use of antibiotics and animal welfare.

I agree wholeheartedly that animal welfare is one issue that has to be integrated into the long-term strategy of the EU aquaculture sector. Next year we should have the results of the evaluation of the EU animal welfare strategy. This will outline the starting point of future initiatives on animal welfare, including for farmed fish.

Let me finish by assuring you that the Commission will maintain a high interest in the welfare of fish and will persist in encouraging stakeholders to work together for further improvements.


  Der Präsident. – Die Aussprache ist geschlossen.

Laatst bijgewerkt op: 8 juli 2019Juridische mededeling - Privacybeleid