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Chinese Minister speaks out for animal welfare

China has promised to vigorously promote work on animal welfare at a major conference this month, hosted by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

Agriculture vice minister Yu Kangzhen told the conference – attended by more than 400 representatives from government agencies, animal welfare organisations, universities and research institutes – of the importance of animal welfare.

Photo: Peter Vrábel
Photo: Peter Vrábel

“Promoting animal welfare has become not only an important choice for the green development of agriculture and a significant measure to ensure food safety and healthy consumption, but even more so an important embodiment of human caring in modern society.

“The Chinese traditional culture has always advocated the concept of raising and using animals with an attitude of love and appreciation and as one of the world’s major developing countries, China would align with the objective requirements for economic and social development and vigorously promote work on animal welfare,” he said.

Minister Yu put forward several suggestions to enhance animal welfare:

• Establish technical standards and regulations of animal welfare and drive up inspection, evaluation and supervision services;

• Advocate the rule of law in promoting animal welfare;

• Advance green and sustainable development of animal farming when addressing animal welfare;

• Carry out international exchanges to understand other nation’s philosophies.

Poultry welfare

The farm animal welfare conference at Hangzhou included a poultry welfare session organised by the International Cooperation Committee of Animal Welfare (ICCAW) and Compassion in World Farming (CIWF).

CIWF’s ambassador, Jeff Zhou, moderated the session and delivered a talk on the future for higher welfare poultry production, enabling him to speak about the Chinese Good Production awards and introduce the winners.

This year, 29 producers from China were recognised for their work on improving broiler, hen and pig welfare.

In addition, CIWF was invited to submit a paper for the conference book, entitled: “Designing systems with the animals’ characteristics and welfare in mind, and recognising producers who are committed to rearing their animals in higher welfare systems.”

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