This month, in terms of animal health, the European Commission has had to take various measures to limit the spread of epidemics such as avian influenza, African swine fever, sheep pox and goat pox. A report by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) warned in particular of the risks of an avian flu pandemic currently being encountered, and recommended a number of measures to try to mitigate the threat.

The Commission is also continuing its work on legislation to regulate transmissible animal diseases, and has also adopted measures to implement the regulation on veterinary medicinal products.

All these issues, including the growing number of epidemic outbreaks and their spread, must be at the core of the actions taken by our profession.

In addition, the European Union has recently adopted free trade agreements or continued negotiations along these lines, including provisions on animal welfare: in particular with Chile, Canada, Kenya and the Mercosur member countries.

In regard to animal welfare, other significant steps have also been taken, including the traceability of dogs and cats and the fight against the illegal pet trade, the regulation on animal welfare during transport, alternatives to animal testing and methods in sciences, and the call for action on measures to phase out cage farming.

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