Laying Hens Directive


21 September 2012   

Chris Davies (ALDE)



How many Member States are now in compliance with the terms of the Council Directive 1999/74/EC of 19 July 1999 laying down minimum standards for the protection of laying hens, and how long does the Commission think it will take before all Member States are in compliance?

Can the Commission confirm that eggs from hens in Member States that are not in compliance with the directive are not being exported to other Member States?


Answer given by Mr Šefčovič on behalf of the Commission:

In response to the question as to how many Member States comply with the ban on unenriched cages as laid down in Council Directive 1999/74/EC on the protection of laying hens(1) the Commission wishes to point out that the information provided by several Member States on their state of compliance is being assessed within the frame of ongoing infringements proceedings. The Commission is therefore currently not in a position to provide a precise figure on the number of Member States that may be considered to comply.

With regard to eggs produced in non-compliant systems, they are illegal since 1 January 2012. Member States are responsible for ensuring, through efficient national controls and traceability systems, that no distortion of the market is caused by the circulation of eggs not produced in compliance with the applicable legislation.

(1)    OJ L 203, 3.8.1999, p. 53.