Throughout the world, animal production faces huge sustainability challenges. The latter are exacerbated in the European Union (EU) by consumption issues linked, in particular, to the health and environmental impacts of meat consumption, and by the increasing societal concerns linked to animal welfare. Simultaneously, animal production may also provide benefits, notably from an economic and nutritional point of view. Some livestock systems, notably grass-based systems, may also offer positive climatic and environmental effects. Animal production is highly regulated in the EU, whereas the consumption of animal products is not (or very lightly) regulated. Many of the negative and positive effects are public goods that are not well taken into account by private actors and markets. Thus, there is legitimacy and scope for public policies aimed at reducing the damage and increasing the benefits of animal production and consumption. The last part of the paper explains how this could be achieved in the EU through a significantly revised and extended Common Agricultural Policy that more closely follows the principles of public economics. Public regulation principles that are proposed have a more general scope and can be adapted to other livestock contexts.
Hervé Guyomard, Zohra Bouamra-Mechemache, Vincent Chatellier, Luc Delaby, Cécile Detang-Dessendre, Jean-Louis Peyraud, and Vincent Réquillart, “Review: Why and how to regulate animal production and consumption: The case of the European Union”, Animal, vol. 15, n. 100283, December 2021.
Animal, vol. 15, n. 100283, December 2021