End the cage debate postponed amid parliamentary chaos

The debate on Compassion in World Farming’s ‘end the cage age’ petition, which includes a call to ban farrowing crates, has been postponed.

MPs were due to debate the petition, which has attracted more than 100,000 signatures, on Monday, September 9. But the debate has been postponed due to the current uncertainty over when parliament will be sitting.

But, with the debate set to be rescheduled at a later date, the NPA is continuing to urge its members to contact their MPs to explain why farrowing crates should not be banned.

In the run up to the scheduled debate, NPA members have been writing to their MPs to ensure they are properly informed, with the help of a template letter, circulated to members.

It explains why farrowing crates are used in the pig sector and highlights how the UK pig sector, already ‘well ahead of most other pig-producing countries in terms of zero-confinement farrowing’, is committed to researching and trialling free-farrowing systems. It also sets out the economic implications of banning crates and explains that doing so could expose the UK to cheaper imports from countries that still use the equipment.

NPA senior policy advisor Ed Barker thanked all members who had sent letters to their MPs and urged others to use the extra time now granted to get letters in to their MPs.

“The debate has been postponed, but it will take place at some point when the parliamentary timetable settles down,” he said. “The letters sent so far not been in vain. These letters do make a difference in ensuring MPs hear both sides of the story and are fully informed about a very important issue to the pig sector. So if you haven’t sent yours yet, you have still got time to educate your MP!”

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Editor of LBM titles Pig World and Farm Business and group editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer. National Pig Association's webmaster. Previously political editor at Farmers Guardian for many years and also worked Farmers Weekly. Occasional farming media pundit. Brought up on a Leicestershire farm, now work from a shed in the garden in Oxfordshire. Big fan of Leicester City and Leicester Tigers. Occasional cricketer.