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16 July 2009

Scientific Opinion on the overall effects of farming systems on dairy cow welfare and disease

Following a request from the European Commission, the EFSA Animal Health and Animal Welfare Panel was asked to deliver a Scientific Opinion on the welfare of dairy cows, considering whether current farming and husbandry systems comply with the requirements of and welfare of dairy cows from the pathological, zootechnical, physiological and behavioural points of view. Due to the great diversity of topics and the huge amount of scientific data, it was proposed that separate scientific opinions on different welfare subjects would be more adequate and effective. Therefore, it was agreed that a scientific report, an overall scientific opinion and four risk assessments on: i) metabolic and reproductive disorders, ii) udder disorders, iii) leg and locomotion problems and iv) behavioural disorders, fear and pain would be produced. This overall scientific opinion integrates conclusions and recommendations from the scientific report with the outcomes from the four separate risk assessments. In the resulting list of outcomes, conclusions and recommendations considered to have a high priority are evidenced. This scientific opinion on the overall effects of farming systems on dairy cow welfare and disease was adopted by the AHAW Panel on 05 June 2009. The EFSA Journal (2009) 1143, 1-38
Author/Organization: European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)
Year: 2009
Topics: animal health, animal welfare/general concepts, dairy production, welfare on the farm