The National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC) issued its 2010 Annual Report today.
The development and review of codes of welfare was the main focus of NAWAC’s work in 2010. Four new codes of welfare were issued during the year; the dairy cattle code, commercial slaughter code, dogs code, and sheep and beef cattle code. A review of the pigs code of welfare was completed and a revised code issued.
Work continued on the review of the meat chicken and layer hens codes of welfare, as well as the development of several more codes.
Dr John Hellström, Chairman of NAWAC, says the past year has been a very busy one for NAWAC and members have worked through a number of challenging issues.
"Although NAWAC is extremely well served by a balanced and diverse range of expert members, the review of the pigs code was particularly challenging as it involved very significant changes to current industry practices."
"Members' expertise has been particularly helpful as the committee worked through practical, scientific, economic and ethical issues".
Other initiatives over the year included supporting Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF)- funded research on the animal welfare risks posed by housing dairy cows, to explore whether this relatively new practice requires any amendment to the dairy cattle code of welfare. The research is expected to be completed mid-2011.
NAWAC is an independent advisory committee to the Minister of Agriculture. The committee was established under the Animal Welfare Act 1999 to provide advice to the Minister on matters relating to the welfare of animals in New Zealand and to develop codes of welfare.
A copy of the annual report is available at http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/regs/animal-welfare/nawac/annual-reports or by request from firstname.lastname@example.org.