A Note to Minister Cobankovic

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Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management
Att. Petar Cobankovic, the minister
Ulica grada Vukovara 78
10000 Zagreb

July 12, 2007

Dear Mr. Cobankovic,

We are writing to you in regard to the European Commission Report of a mission carried out in Croatia from December 4 to 8, 2006 to review the control systems for the protection of animals slaughtered for human consumption, which is attached to this letter.

In this report conclusions are in relation to the measures taken by the Croatian competent authorities to evaluate control systems which have been put in place and ensure that meat exported to the EU is obtained from animals which have been slaughtered under conditions which offer guarantees of humane treatment at least equivalent to those provided in Council Directive 93/119/EC.

We are unpleasantly surprised by the findings of the Commission in the Final report of the mission about the lack of training and guidance from the Central Competent Authority (CCA), in this case the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of Croatia, Veterinary Administration on Animal Welfare Slaughter, which has contributed to inadequate controls in slaughterhouses. This resulted in inadequate stunning of poultry in a slaughterhouse which is approved to be exported as meat to the EU, undermining the guarantees given by Croatia in respect to the protection of animals.

The report also makes one recommendation addressed to the CCA, aimed at rectifying the identified shortcomings and implementing and control of the recommended measures in the future.

In regard to the here-mentioned parts of the report, we would like to ask you what steps and when the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management will take so as to eliminate these shortcomings and that the new Animal Protection Act, which came into force with the January 1, 2007, becomes effective in the interest of animals it is supposed to "protect."

Loooking forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely yours,

Luka Oman

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