One step closer to an animal welfare tax

One step closer to an animal welfare tax

The parliamentary group of the Land of Lower Saxony voted on August 15, 2022, in favor of “a tax earmarked for animal welfare on meat products”. A new position that suggests progress in the debate on funding to support breeders in the restructuring of the sector towards higher standards in Germany.

“In order to reliably finance the compensation of competitive disadvantages and the livestock processingthe parliamentary group of the Land of Lower Saxony (FDP) is counting on a federal fund for the animal wellbeingpowered by a tax earmarked for animal welfare on meat products,” he said in a press release published on August 15, 2022. This financing tool is intended to help finance the restructuring of the livestock sector in Germany towards higher standards.

Towards an agreement

A change of position warmly welcomed by the Greens and stakeholders. Until then, the FDP was opposed to funding dedicated to the transformation of piggeries “It is an important support to guarantee better protection of animals and fair competition”, reacted Renate KunastGreens.

Expectations on mandatory origin labeling

In return, the parliamentary group of the Land of Lower Saxony calls for concrete measures to “create fair conditions for competition and “providing opportunities” for farmers.

“We must ensure that these funds actually reach the farmers. It is above all the food retail trade that has the responsibility to keep the cost to the customer as low as possible. The best thing would be for him to bear all the additional costs,” said FDP spokesman Hermann Grupe.

Likewise, the party wants these measures to be guaranteed by a labeling compulsory breeding and origin of the animals.

A tax amount under discussion

According to the German daily newspaper Handelsblatt, which specializes in business journalism, “the leader of the Lower Saxony parliamentary group, Stefan Birknersaid the Federal Minister of Agriculture, Cem Ozdemir (Greens), was to discuss the amount of the tax with stakeholders. However, it should not exceed 40 cents per kilogram. »

“With a consumption of 7.4 million tons of meat per year, this would correspond to revenues of almost three billion euros, which would have to be paid via federal law to an animal welfare fund. The tax should apply to all countries of origin and also to the wholesale trade”, specify the German journalists.

These discussions have so far taken place in the Land of Lower Saxony. At the national level, “the government coalition partners, including the FDP and the Greens, have not yet managed to agree on a funding concept aimed at improving animal welfare. The third and largest coalition partner, the socialist SPD, has already come out in favor of the tax, but has not actively pushed for its introduction,” the EURACTIV website reported on August 17.