09. December 2019

Germany | Sigmaringen | Administrative court ignores expert opinons on long-distant transports of calves

Another setback regarding our long-standing research on the transport of calves:  In a verdict form 9th of December 2019, the district office of Ravensburg was asked to approve a transport of 149 calves from the German town Bad Waldsee to Spain. The district office has denied to approve long-distance transports of calves with reference to the "Live Transport Handbook". The handbook has been created in cooperation with scientists and helps official veterinarians to interpret the EU regulation on the protection of animals during transport. The handbook explains that the requirements for appropriately supplying calves with food (milk or milk substitutes) cannot be met. 

According to the EU regulation, calves have to be supplied species-appropriate after nine hours of transport before they are allowed to be transported for another nine hours. Species-appropriate supply is not possible on the transport vehicles used. Since 2015, we have been documenting several times that the legally required supply and resting hours during long-distance transports of calves are not carried out. 

The administrative court ruled differently. With their verdict they did not only ignore the opinion of official veterinarians and scientific experts, but also the view and recommendation of federal minister Julia Klöckner. The federal minister has been stating in a letter that there are no suitable transport vehicles for the long-distance transport of calves.