Measures to prevent and halt outbreaks of animal diseases such as avian flu or foot and mouth disease, informally agreed by MEPs and the EU Council of Ministers in June 2015, were endorsed by Parliament on Tuesday.
The new rules, in line with Parliament's long-standing position, put more emphasis on prevention and clarify the responsibilities of farmers, traders, animal professionals including veterinarians and also pet owners to this end.
The new law will empower the EU Commission to take urgent measures to tackle emerging diseases that could have a “highly significant impact” on public health and agricultural production.
All disease control measures will have to take animal welfare into account and spare targeted animals, including stray animals, any avoidable pain, distress or suffering.
Following Parliament's endorsement, the regulation can now be published in the EU Official Journal. It will enter into force 20 days later and will be applicable five years thereafter.
Tuesday March 8, 2016/ EP/ European Union.