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Across the world, billions of animals are farmed in cages. That includes pigs, hens, rabbits, ducks, and quail – all subjected to cage cruelty.

Sows are forced to nurse their piglets in crates, rabbits and quail endure their whole lives in barren cages, and ducks and geese are caged for force feeding to produce foie gras. These systems confine, restrict, and prevent animals from expressing their natural behaviours. Compassion in World Farming’s flagship End the Cage Age campaign is changing that.

On September 2018, Compassion launched the End the Cage Age European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) to end the use of cages in animal farming in the European Union (EU). The Initiative was supported by 170 NGOs from different sectors. In one year, 1.4 million EU citizens signed the petition, turning the End the Cage Age ECI into:

  • The sixth ECI to succeed out of 84 registered initiatives in the first eight years of the process
  • The ECI with the third highest signature count.
  • The first valid ECI for farmed animal welfare.

In June 2021, the European Commission announced its decision on the End the Cage Age ECI, making a historic commitment to phase out cages in animal farming across the EU. It intends to present a proposal for a new law by the end of 2023 to prohibit the use of cages for all animal species referred to in the Initiative.

End the Cage Age is the first ECI for animal welfare that has successfully led to a commitment from the EU Commission to overturn EU legislation and to implement revisions. This will free more than 300 million farmed animals from their cruel cages by 2027.


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