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Thursday 3 June 2004
The 2003 National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC) Annual Report was
Professor David Mellor, Chairman of NAWAC said the bulk of the committee's
work has been focused on the development of the Codes of Welfare.
These codes, issued under the Animal Welfare Act 1999, outline the minimum
standards required for the care and protection of animals.
During 2003, the broiler chicken and rodeo codes were completed with the
expectation that the pig, layer hen, and circus codes will be in place during
Professor Mellor acknowledges that drafting the codes is a time consuming and
"A number of factors need to be taken into account such as public
submissions, consultation processes, available technology and good practice and
scientific knowledge in relation to the management of animals."
Other codes currently underway include those for the circus animals and zoo
(exhibit) animals and for commercial slaughter. Drafting will begin on the codes
for deer, cats, dairy cattle, transport of animals by sea, and painful husbandry
Professor Mellor said the committee has considered welfare issues associated
with practices such as deer velveting, dubbing which is the removal of part of
the comb of male poultry, electroimmobilisation, electronic dog collars, live
animal exports, and vertebrate pest control.
The NAWAC Annual Report also provides details on research projects into
animal welfare funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF). The
following is a selection of research initiated during 2003/2004: transport and
heat stress, the economic cost of improving animal welfare on farms, wintering
systems for deer, shelter for lambing, key poultry welfare indicators, and
prolapses in pigs.
NAWAC is an independent advisory committee to the Minister of Agriculture.
The committee is established under section 56 of the Animal Welfare Act 1999 to
provide advice 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: www.biosecurity.govt.nz/regs/animal-welfare/nawac/annual-reports
Media contact: Philippa White, MAF Senior Communications Adviser Phone:
0-4-498 9948 or 027 223 1875 Email:
firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.maf.govt.nz/mafnet/press/