Home Journalism Ghastly Stupidity About Live Animal Exports

Ghastly Stupidity About Live Animal Exports



Oh come on people, this is just stupid:

New analysis suggests the EU could be responsible for up to 80% of the global trade in live farm animals, which continues to be linked to animal welfare failings.

Global data provided to the Guardian by the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) indicates that 1.8 billion live chickens, pigs, sheep, goats and cattle were moved across a border in 2019. The EU was estimated to be responsible for more than three-quarters of that total.

“A large part of the cross-border movement of live animals takes place in the EU,” said the FAO’s livestock development officer, Anne Mottet.

Well, yes, obviously. Seriously, stop and think for a moment.

Iris Baumgaertner, of Swiss-German NGO AWF-TSB, said in Germany the specialty is hatched chicks. The report found that the country exported 312 million head of poultry within the EU in 2019, of which almost 100 million weighed under 185 grams.

“The number of animals being transported around the EU, and the millions of chickens leaving Germany, is the insane result of globalisation and specialisation,” Baumgaertner said.

Yes, it’s specialisation, a little bit of it is, but it’s not globalisation. Because animal movements across the EU’s borders are some trivial number – recall that pregnant cow that was going to be euthanised for wandering over the Bulgarian, was it, border?

The European Union is 27 countries and therefore has lots of international borders while also having the one farm and animal market/regime. The United States is about the same number of people (-ish, 330 million to 450 million), close enough in area, and is also the one farm and animal market/regime. But the borders between the 50 states are not international borders. Therefore movements of steers from Virginia into Pennsylvania (if such occurs of course) are not international movements of live animals.

The EU is not responsible for 80% of the global trade in live farm animals. It might well be the home of 80% of the global trade in live farm animals across international borders. But this is a function of our definition of an international border, nothing else.

Gorizia to Nova Gorica is an international movement. And?



  1. Been happening for a long time…

    Keep movin’, movin’, movin’
    Though they’re disapprovin’
    Keep them dogies movin’, rawhide
    Don’t try to understand ’em
    Just rope ’em, throw, and brand ’em
    Soon we’ll be livin’ high and wide


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in British English
expunct (ɪkˈspʌŋkt)
VERB (transitive)
1. to delete or erase; blot out; obliterate
2. to wipe out or destroy

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