EU farm council approves new animal breeding rules

New EU rules designed to help preserve “valuable animal genetic resources” have been approved by the EU Council of Farm Ministers, meeting in Brussels today.

The new rules cover animal breeding, trade in, and imports into the EU of breeding animals and their genetic material, confirming an agreement reached by the Council and the European Parliament in December 2015.

One of the main claimed advances from the new structure is that the new rules will deliver a more harmonized regulatory approach to breeding issues. Until now, for example, EU legislation has been organised according to individual species while the new regulation will provide a “single and streamlined body of provisions for bovine, porcine, ovine, caprine and equine species”.

It’s also claimed by the Council that the new rules will aim to avoid obstacles to trade resulting from the national “transposition of EU legislation” while also helping to “overcome existing problems and unjustified restrictions in cross border activities of approved breed societies”.

“The animal breeding regulation will contribute to preserving valuable animal genetic resources,” said the Council, adding that it would also give greater protection to biodiversity and to the production of “typical quality regional products”.

The regulation will enter into force by mid-2016 and be ready to be applied commercially from the second half of 2018.

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