News story

UK maintains high animal welfare standards

New measures to ensure the protection of animals used in scientific research have been set out today by the Home Office.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

This forms part of our drive to strengthen and harmonise animal welfare standards across Europe.

The measures are included in a new EU Directive which will ensure similar levels of protection are applied in other European countries.

Protecting endangered species

Some of the rules being retained by the UK include a continued ban on procedures involving endangered species and great apes and maintaining our current high standards of care and accommodation for all animals.

Home Office Minister Lynne Featherstone said: ‘This government expects the highest standards in animal research in the UK and the application of this new EU Directive will ensure these high standards are maintained.

‘While we recognise the need to use animals in order to help develop potentially life-saving drugs and treatments; we are also working to reduce the use of animals in research.

Europe wide agreement

‘As part of this ongoing work, we will continue to promote measures that will ‘Replace, Reduce and Refine’ the use of animals, and we will also be introducing a ban on the testing of household products on animals in due course.’

The Directive was subject to a thorough consultation process, which resulted in responses from over 13,000 individuals and almost 100 organisations.


Updates to this page

Published 17 May 2012