Legislation – University of Copenhagen


Protecting Animals and Enabling Research in the European Union: An Overview of Development and Implementation of Directive 2010/63/EU

By I. A. S. Olsson, S. P. da Silva, D. Townend & P. Sandøe (2017) 
ILAR Journal. Oxford University Press


In 1986, European Directive 86/609/EEC, regulating the use of animals in research, was one of the first examples of common legislation to set standards for animal protection across the Member States of the former European Economic Community, now the European Union, with the aim of securing a level European playing field. Starting in 2002, a process of revising European animal experimentation legislation was undertaken, with one of its key aims being to ensure high standards of welfare for laboratory animals across Europe. This resulted in Directive 2010/63/EU, which has regulated this activity in Europe since 2013. Since this is a European Union Directive, transposition into national legislation is a necessary and important part of the implementation of the new legislation. This paper gives an overview of the transposition process followed by an analysis of the potential to reach the different objectives of the directive, particularly with a focus on securing the same high standards of animal protection across member countries. The analysis focuses on three separate issues: (1) minimum standards for laboratory animal housing and care, (2) restrictions on the use of certain animal species, and (3) project review and authorization.

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