VG Osnabrück confirms ban on cattle transport to Morocco
How important is the Animal welfare for slaughtering purposes? Shall Animal welfare be guaranteed by extension of the transport time? The answer, in Germany, it’s yes.
The Osnabrück Administrative Court has rejected an urgent application by which a transport company (applicant) wanted to obtain permission by way of interim injunction for a cattle transport to Morocco that had already been prohibited by the district of Emsland.
By decision of 30 September 2021, the district of Emsland had rejected the transport company’s application for clearance and approval of its intended transport of 448 breeding cattle from Messingen to Benslimane in Morocco in the period from 5 to 8 October 2021. In justification, the district had stated that the rest breaks of 9.5 hours each in France and Spain planned by the transporter, which were to be taken on the occasion of driving time breaks for the driver during the transport, which lasted a total of 5 days and 8 hours, will be violating the principle of keeping the duration of the transport as short as possible and avoiding delays. Since the animals were to remain in the vehicle during these breaks and the transporter had refused to provide a second driver for each truck, the transport has not been authorized.
The Administrative Court rejected the urgent application and confirmed the decision of the district authority. The transport of the animals with only one driver per lorry contradicted the principle of keeping the transport time as short as possible, which is based on European law.
The applicant complies with the time requirements under European law, which provide for a break of at least one hour after a maximum transport duration of 14 hours, during which the animals are watered and fed and after which the transport can be continued for a further 14 hours.
However, the transport of animals shall not be carried out if it could cause injury or unnecessary suffering to the animals.