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NZ Welfare Committee Release Annual Report

28 July 2009

NEW ZEALAND - The continuing development and review of codes of welfare were the main focus of NAWAC’s work in 2008.

A code for the commercial slaughter of animals was completed at the end of the year and is expected to be issued in 2009, along with dairy cattle, dog and sheep and beef cattle codes.

A start was made on the review of a number of codes, including the pigs code of welfare which is a high priority for NAWAC.

The committee also continued to work on the development of a code of welfare for the transportation of livestock for all purposes.

"We commissioned an independent report to assess the transport environment as a whole and look at whether a range of current standards could be integrated in to a single, new, code of welfare," says Dr. Peter O’Hara, Chairman of NAWAC.

"Using that information a draft code has been created in consultation with specialists and those most likely to be affected. The next step is public consultation which will take place over the next few months".

NAWAC discussions on key indicators for assessing animal welfare resulted in a commitment, as far is possible, to write minimum standards as statements of welfare outcomes to be achieved from the animal’s perspective rather than as prescriptions of facilities e.g. the size of cages.

In working on the development and review of codes, the committee acknowledged the importance of stockmanship in the welfare of farm animals and signalled its intention to emphasise this in codes.

NAWAC is an independent advisory committee to the Minister of Agriculture. The committee was established under section 56 of the Animal Welfare Act 1999 to provide advice to the Minister on matters relating to the welfare of animals in New Zealand and to develop codes of welfare.

Further Reading

- You can view the full NAWAC report by clicking here.

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