Sow in a farrowing crate

End the Cage Age

Email EU Ministers

Every year across the European Union, around 300 million farmed animals are confined in cages. Unable to carry out many of their natural behaviours, these animals are treated as nothing more than production machines.

In response to tireless campaigning, in June 2021, the European Commission committed to proposing legislation by the end of 2023 to phase out and finally prohibit the use of cages. We must now ensure a total ban on caged farming is delivered, as soon as possible, and that the EU paves the way not only for a cage-free Europe, but for a cage-free world.

Please email EU Ministers today and ask them to support the Commission’s commitment to End the Cage Age. Together, we can help achieve a world in which no farmed animal will suffer in a cage.

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What our investigators found

A recent, far-reaching, Compassion investigation exposed the shocking reality of caged farming for mother pigs across the EU. We visited 16 farms in four countries – France, Italy, Poland and Spain. And, whether the farms were standard pork producers or suppliers for world-renowned products like Parma and Bayonne Ham, the caged cruelty was universal.

Sows desperately trying to interact with their piglets through bars and express their natural maternal instincts.

Mother pig in a farrowing crate

Sows forced to lie in their own urine and faeces. Not only an unnatural behaviour that they would instinctively avoid, but also increases the risk of urinary tract infections.

Caged sow and piglet in dirty conditions

Sows with severe pressure sores caused by prolonged lying on a hard surface.

Sow in a farrowing crate with large pressure sore on shoulder

Confined sows show increased levels of abnormal repetitive behaviour – unable to carry out their natural behaviours, sows resorted to chewing at bars or pawing at the ground.

Row of three sows, all biting the bar of their cages

It is argued that cages are necessary to reduce piglet deaths, but in fact the stress of caged confinement can result in increased stillbirths and weaker piglets.

Deceased piglet

Cages are barely bigger than the sows’ own body, preventing almost all movement other than standing up and lying down – even these movements are difficult.

Overhead image of sow in a sow stall barely larger than her body

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You can multiply your impact by asking your friends and family to take action, too! The more of us who demand an end to caged farming, the harder we are to ignore.

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Hundreds of millions of farmed animals across the European Union are needlessly suffering in cages. Please, take action to end this cruelty. Email EU Ministers responsible for animal welfare and call on them to support an end to the Cage Age for farmed animals.