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Government expands expert animal welfare committee
The new Animal Welfare Committee will advise government on future farming reforms.
Remit to include pets, wild animals kept by people and farmed animals

The government has expanded the remit of its Farm Animal Welfare Committee to provide advice to ministers on pets, wild animals kept by people and farmed animals.

The committee was renamed on Tuesday (1 October) to the Animal Welfare Committee and will continue to advise Defra and the Devolved Administrations (DAs) in Scotland and Wales.

“We are a nation of animal lovers and this government is committed to taking important steps forward to strengthen our already high standards on animal welfare,” commented animal welfare minister, Zac Goldsmith.

“The committee has provided the government with invaluable advice over the years and I look forward to continuing work with colleagues as they broaden their remit to include pets and wild animals kept by people, as well as farmed animals.”

Peter Jinman, chair of the Animal Welfare Committee, said: “I welcome the expansion of the committee’s remit to advise on a broader spectrum of animal welfare issues and encourage experts with the relevant skills to apply for a role in this important new area of activity.”

The main priorities of the new Animal Welfare Committee include:
  • advising government on future farming reforms to deliver welfare enhancements
  • advising government on the welfare of companion animals and wild animals kept by people
  • reviewing dairy and beef cattle production systems and the welfare of the animals
  • working closely with the European Forum of Animal Welfare Councils (EuroFAWC).

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Nominations open for National Cat Awards 2020

News Story 1
 UK charity Cats Protection has announced that cat owners can nominate their pets for the National Cat Awards 2020 starting today.

The awards take place annually, celebrating heart warming stories of the positive impact that cats have on their owners. Cat owners have until Thursday 12 March to submit their nominations through the Cats Protection website. 

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News Shorts
Restriction zone lifted at Suffolk chicken farm

A one-kilometre restriction zone around a commercial chicken farm in mid-Suffolk has been lifted, following the completion of surveillance testing for avian influenza H5N3 with negative results.

Some 27,000 birds on the premises were culled after a veterinary surgeon identified the disease while investigating a fall in egg production. Poultry keepers are urged to take action to reduce the risk of disease in their flock by following government advice on biosecurity.