Party for the Animals | Vestering and Wassenberg’s questions about…

Submission date:
January 10th. 2023

Questions from members Vestering and Wassenberg (both parties for the animals) to the Minister for Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and the Minister for Justice and Security about the serious neglect of dozens of animals at a company that has repeatedly made mistakes in the past and was already under stricter oversight

1. What did you think when you heard that the NVWA had “interned” over 70 cows, oxen and calves after these animals were found emaciated and polluted, plus two animals that had already died?[1]

2. What ran through your mind when you saw the photo NVWA shared with the report, which shows cows littered deep in their own feces and with no access to clean drinking water and dry food?

3. Is it true that this company is subject to stricter supervision by NVWA?[2]

4. How can seriously neglected animals be kept in a company under more strict supervision?

5. Can you indicate what the more rigorous NVWA oversight process consists of?

6. In view of the fact that the cows were so emaciated and were deep in their own feces, do you think that this stricter supervision was adequately carried out?

7. Do you share the view that the long-term neglect of animals that can occur under more stringent supervision raises doubts about the quality of supervision and implementation on livestock farms? If not, why? If so, what action would you like to take to significantly improve oversight and enforcement at upstream companies?

8. Can you confirm that in 2018, the NVWA identified more than 300 “companies of concern” or “risk companies” with structural issues related to animal welfare, and that since a change in the way NVWA does business in 2019, only a small percentage of These companies under more stringent supervision?[3]

9. Do you think there is enough insight into these high risk past companies? If so, what does that show?

10. How many checks were carried out after 2019 in high-risk companies that were not placed under stricter supervision?

11. How much time has elapsed between the penultimate inspection and the last NVWA inspection at the farm where neglected animals are now found?

12. Is it true that the same cattle breeder was convicted on appeal in 2018 of neglecting livestock? [4] Could you explain what were the violations at that time and what penalties were taken?

13. Since the conviction in 2018, how often has the NVWA visited the animals of this convicted rancher?

14. When exactly did these inspections take place? Are you ready to send inspection reports with answers to these questions to the board? If not, why?

15. Can you explain what violations were observed in this company in the past ten years and did this lead to the imposition of penalties? If so, what, when and how were they supervised? If not, why?

16. Is it true that after “stocking” 70 cattle, the farmer moved other animals almost immediately?[5] If so, what do you think of this?

17. What measures have you taken to prevent the person in charge of this company from committing the same crimes again?

18. Do you intend to conduct new and unannounced inspections in the very short term, given current knowledge? If not, why? If so, what are these measures?

19. Have criminal and administrative investigations into violations been brought before the court? Are you ready to send the results of these investigations to the House of Representatives?

20. Do you think it would be wise or desirable for a company or individual that repeatedly commits serious animal welfare offenses to continue to keep animals, given the high risk that these animals will again be subjected to serious neglect?

21. Has the NVWA been in contact with the Career Attorney General’s Office regarding a temporary ban on keeping animals as a temporary measure?

22. Can you explain the average processing time for accurate reports in the last year? In how many cases has the period for preparing the fine report expired? Is it true that the offender gets away with the offense in such a case?

23. Are you ready to involve the supervision of primary companies in the development of the “three strikes” principle, according to which more stringent measures will be taken in case of repeated violations?[6] If so, how? If not, why?

24. Can you answer these questions one by one and on time?

[1] https://www.nvwa.nl/nieuws-en-media/nieuws/2023/01/05/nvwa-neem-rond-de-70-verwaarloosde-runderen-in-bewaring-vanwege-dierenwelzijn

[2] https://twitter.com/_nvwa/status/1610984967558815745

[3] Parliamentary Paper 33835, No. 197

[4] https://www.bd.nl/bommelerwaard/boer-uit-well-verwaarloost-weer-zijn-vee-70-runderen-in-beslag-taken~aacebc45

[5] https://www.bd.nl/bommelerwaard/onbelief-in-well-omschten-boer-heeft-nu-alweer-koeien-op-stal~ac13519c/

[6] Parliamentary Paper 28286, No. 1259

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