During the council Ministers took stock of the agricultural market situation in particular on current difficulties in the milk and pig sectors.
Martijn van Dam: “Several members expressed their concerns and made clear the market situation in dairy and pig meat sectors are worrying and need to improve urgently. We heard interesting views on how to move forward. Today's debate will be the base for the formal discussion on this very topic on the March council meeting. On that occasion we will assess the market measures currently in place, and decide what would be an appropriate approach.”
The Council held a debate on animal welfare on the basis of a position paper prepared by the German, Swedish, Danish and Netherlands delegations. The paper calls for an EU platform on animal welfare to be established for stakeholders and competent authorities. The council broadly supported the establishment of an EU-platform. Some member states noted that, given the current high level of EU standards for animal welfare, equal treatment should be ensured for EU and non-EU producers, and that priority should be given to improving the enforcement of existing legislation.
Ministers were also briefed by the Commission on the state of play of international agricultural trade issues and the development of a long term strategy for agricultural research.