HC Deb 28 November 2001 vol 375 cc1026-7W
Mr. Redwood

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how many animals have been used in live experiments tests within the EU in the last year; and how many have been used in the United Kingdom; [17815]

(2) how many animals are held in Government laboratories for live testing purposes. [17816]

Angela Eagle

I have been asked to reply.

The latest years for which we have information for the European Union as a whole are 1996–97, when the number of animals used in experiments was 11,646,000.

The latest year for which figures are available for the United Kingdom is 2000, when the number of animals involved in scientific procedures started in Great Britain was 2,643,000, with a further 14,100 in Northern Ireland. 83 per cent. of the animals used were rats, mice and other rodent species. Dogs, cats, horses and non-human primates, which are accorded special protection by the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, were collectively used in under one per cent. of the procedures.

Information regarding the number of animals used for toxicological purposes is provided in Table 10a of the Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals Great Britain 2000. This is broken down by species of animal, but not by type of establishment.

The Home Office does not collect information relating to the number of animals held in Government laboratories or other establishments designated under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986.

Mr. Redwood

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will publish the EU proposals for laboratory testing of household chemicals on animals. [17778]

Mr. Meacher

The European Commission published a White Paper on 27 February 2001 setting out the strategy for a future Community Policy for chemicals with the overall objective of ensuring a high level of protection for human health and the environment. A copy of the White Paper has been deposited in the Library of the House. Environment Ministers from all member states called on the European Commission to present, by the end of 2001, its main proposals for a simple, clear and transparent regulatory framework to implement the strategy while limiting the need for animal testing.