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News Section Icon Published 6/7/2022

Compassion in World Farming is urging animal lovers across the globe to unite in a show of support for a ban on the cruel trade of live animal exports on 14 June as part of the seventh annual Ban Live Exports: International Awareness Day.

The charity is encouraging people all over the world to take action by joining a Twitter storm or signing a petition aimed at persuading the EU to ban this cruel and unnecessary trade. Every year, millions of live animals, including calves, sheep and pigs are transported by road, rail, sea or air across continents. More than three million are exported from the EU alone. During this time, they often endure horrific conditions such as overcrowding and extreme temperatures causing enormous pain and distress.

The Ban Live Exports: International Awareness Day, which was started by the charity in 2016, is held on 14 June every year and brings together people from all over the world to protest against the continuation of this cruel and unnecessary trade. This year sees the launch of a hard-hitting new video featuring a spoof travel agency advert mocking the inadequacy of EU regulations to protect the welfare of farmed animals during transport.

Mandy Carter, Head of Campaigns at Compassion in World Farming, said: “Compassion has campaigned for a ban on live exports for decades. Under current European Union rules, pigs can be transported non-stop in trucks for 24 hours and most sheep and cattle for 29 hours with just a one-hour ‘rest’ during the journey. It’s time for this awful trade to end once and for all.

“That’s why we’re urging people all over the world to come together and show their support for a ban by taking part in our Twitterstorm or signing our petition on the Ban Live Exports: International Awareness Day. It’s vital that we draw attention to the plight of these animals – not just in the EU, but all over the world – so that policymakers understand the breadth of support that exists to end these cruel and unnecessary journeys worldwide.”

This year there is a crucial chance to influence EU law as there will be a ‘fitness check’ of the Transport Regulation and the EU Commission has committed to revising this legislation. As a result, Compassion’s teams across the EU will be writing to their national agriculture ministers urging them to put this important issue on the agenda at a meeting of the Council of Ministers on 13 June.

In follow up to this, supporters in the EU are being urged to take part in a Twitterstorm on the Awareness Day itself, the 14 June, aimed at their respective national AGRIFISH Council members to show their support for a ban and calling for urgent action. People outside the EU are urged to sign Compassion’s petition against EU live exports.To date, the petition – organised jointly with Four Paws and WeMove Europe – has collected more than 900,000 signatures.

Last year’s day of action, which was held virtually for the second year in a row due to COVID-19 restrictions, received an overwhelming show of support in at least 40 countries: over 150 NGOs joined the Twitterstorm to raise awareness about this awful trade, and tweets containing the hashtag #BanLiveExports received more than 62 million views.

For further information about the International Awareness Day to Ban Live Exports visit Compassion’s website here.

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For more information please email media.team@ciwf.org or call 01483 521 886

Notes to Editors

1. The date of 14 June was chosen to mark the live export tragedy that occurred on the same day in 2015 when 13,000 sheep tragically lost their lives during a long sea journey from Romania to Somalia. Along the way thousands of sheep died from dehydration, starvation and exhaustion.

2. Compassion in World Farming was founded in 1967 by a British dairy farmer who became horrified at the development of intensive factory farming. Today Compassion is the leading farm animal welfare organisation dedicated to ending factory farming and achieving humane and sustainable food. With headquarters in the UK, we have offices across Europe, in the US, China and South Africa.

3. To find out more about Compassion in World Farming visit: www.ciwf.org

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