March 22, 2021

German Federal Council proposes animal welfare focused tax on meat, milk


At its most recent meeting this month, the German Federal Council has submitted a request to the German government for a financing strategy to transform livestock farming to be more environmentally friendly and humane.


For this purpose, a tax on meat, milk and other animal products relating to animal welfare is proposed.


The federal government has called for concrete measures to be quickly taken to implement the recommendations of the Borchert Commission in order to provide the necessary conditions to transform livestock farming.


Germany’s Ministry of Agriculture and Food (BMEL) presented the results of the independent feasibility study on the proposals of the Borchert Commission on March 2.


The study shows which actions are legally possible to finance and promote livestock conversion in Germany and Europe, and which are ruled out for legal or other reasons.


It also confirms that farmers should be compensated for farm renovation costs to promote animal welfare. Total financing costs are expected to total: €2,900 million in 2025;€ 4,300 million in 2030; and €4,000 million in 2040.


According to the Federal Council’s opinion, introducing an animal welfare tax on meat, milk and other animal products is a key element in financing the transformation of livestock farming, which is also supported by the majority of consumers. The tax is intended to cover the additional costs of higher animal welfare standards.


The council also considers important the introduction of a mandatory state animal welfare label. Consumers have demanded that food labels provide information on animal welfare during rearing, transport and slaughter.


- Federal Council (Germany)