On-going evaluation of the Rural Development Programmes of five German federal states in the programming period 2014 - 2020: Effects on animal welfare
The Thünen Institute of Farm Economics evaluates the effects on animal welfare of the Rural Development Programs (RDP) of North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse, Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony/Bremen.
Various measures under the RDP such as the farm investment support, farm advisory services or animal welfare payments, aim at improving animal welfare. We assess if they achieve this goal. To this aim, the following questions are crucial:
Evaluation of the effects on animal welfare takes place within evaluation of the whole Rural Development Programs.
To evaluate the effects of the various support measures, we use different methods and data-sources. Milk-inspection data, which contains information on the health status (i.e. mastitis, metabolic disorders) is used for the evaluation of the grazing premium in North-Rhine-Westfalia. The result-oriented animal welfare measure for pigs newly implemented in Lower-Saxony is accompanied in a first step by telefone- und written surveys on the administrative procedures and changes implemented on the supported farms. For Hesse and North-Rhine-Westfalia data from the Identification and Information System for Animals (HIT) is tested with respect to its use for evaluation puropses.
For the analysis, we evaluate funding data (for example, animal numbers, funding amounts) but also self-collected data and information from statistical surveys. In addition to quantitative statistical methods (descriptive statistics, multivariate analyzes), we use qualitative methods (focus groups, content analysis).
Animal Welfare Payments (RDP-Measure M14)
For the evaluation of the result-oriented animal welfare measure for fattening pigs ("curly tail premium") and the action-oriented laying hen measure in Lower Saxony, written surveys were conducted at participating farms in the years 2017/2018. From these surveys, the following findings were obtained and conclusions and recommendations derived:
Farm Investment Support
The evaluated federal states have different requirements with regard to the animal welfare of the supported stables. Lower Saxony/Bremen and Schleswig-Holstein, and since 2019 also Hesse, have more demanding funding conditions than North Rhine-Westphalia.
Based on a written survey of the recipients conducted in 2018, it was possible to determine that:
- some improvements could be implemented, whereby the deadweight effects reduce the influence of the funding,
- the requirements of Appendix 1 are not always sufficient for animal-friendly husbandry and
- only a few dairy farms converted from tie-stalls to loose housing.
A further orientation of the AFP towards the promotion of animal-friendly housing is recommended, whereby the promotion guidelines should be continuously adapted to the state of knowledge and non-animal-friendly methods should be excluded from the support.
5.2015 - 12.2024
Project status: ongoing
Results 6 - 10 of 12
Results 6 - 10 of 12