November 15, 2011
The complete ban on traditional layer cages from January 1, 2012 may likely be deferred for half a year.
A proposal on this matter will be discussed next week by the EU ministers of agriculture.
As a result, EU member states which do not fully comply with the legislation from the beginning of next year, will under certain conditions, have an escape clause of another six months.
Over a decade ago, the EU decided that traditional cages will not be allowed from January 1, 2012. Many countries have meanwhile adapted to this directive, but some in Southern Europe and relatively new member states in Eastern Europe do not fully comply yet.
In the temporary plan up till July 1, 2012, proposed by EU commissioner, John Dalli, such countries will only have the opportunity to process and sell domestically produced eggs in their own country. No export of these processed eggs is permitted. However, export of further processed products like cookies, will be possible.
According to Dalli, strict control and sanctioning will be carried out from January 1 anyway. This coming Monday, EU ministers will convene and the decision on this plan can be expected.