Agricultural controls and animal welfare
Extensive, and often complex and highly specialist, regulatory requirements protect crops and animals at the farm in order to preserve them and the industry from infection and to maintain welfare standards long before they become product in the food chain and thus directly subject to hygiene and labelling controls.
Our team of specialist food law barristers have experience in cases involving legislation such as the Animal Health Act 1981, the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and the Welfare of Farmed Animals (England) Regulations 2007 and the Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing Regulations 2015.
- A judicial review testing the Plant Protection Regulations 2011 (made to implement EU Regulation EC 1107/2009)
- R (DEFRA by its agent, HSE) v Pirbright Institute – a prosecution of a Government-funded research centre of international standing for biosecurity breaches during repeated laboratory experiments to determine the ability of Foot and Mouth Disease Virus (a most infectious serious livestock disease, past outbreaks of which have been economically/agriculturally catastrophic) to cross-infect from one cow to another.
- FSA v a slaughterhouse – for the slaughterhouse defending a criminal prosecution in respect of animal welfare legislation
- A slaughterhouse – successfully advising the business in respect of criminal investigations into breaches of animal welfare legislation – no prosecutions were commenced
- A slaughterhouse v FSA – for the slaughterhouse successfully appealing the service of a Welfare Enforcement Notice
- A slaughterhouse v FSA – challenging the legal regime in respect of the condemnation and seizure of food
- FSA v a slaughterhouse – providing advice in the early stages of an investigation into alleged animal welfare issues
We also act in cases involving pets, domestic animals and working animals, whether under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 or other legislation such as the Dangerous Dogs Acts and whether or not involving the RSPCA.