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2. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 304/125

(98/C 304/188) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0522/98
by Shaun Spiers (PSE) to the Commission
(2 March 1998)

Subject: Welfare of animals at slaughter

When does the Commission intend to bring forward proposals on improving the welfare of animals at slaughter?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission
(16 March 1998)

Article 13 of Directive 93/119/EC on the protection of animals at the time of slaughter or killing (1) requires the
Commission to submit to the Council a report drawn up on the basis of an opinion from the scientific veterinary
committee together with appropriate proposals concerning the use, in particular, of free bullet pistols, gases or
combinations thereof for stunning or killing and other scientific recognized procedure for stunning or killing. It is
the intention of the Commission to present the report together with appropriate proposals to the Council in the
near future.

(1) OJ L 340, 31.12.1993.

(98/C 304/189) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0523/98
by Susan Waddington (PSE) to the Commission
(2 March 1998)

Subject: The use of agricultural intervention stocks − fruit and vegetables

Following press claims that millions of kilograms of vegetables and fruit surpluses are being wasted, rather than
being consumed by schools across the Union, what measures are the Commission taking to publicise the
availability of fruit and vegetable surpluses to schools?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission
(2 April 1998)

Council Regulation (EC) No 2200/96 (1) provides for fruit withdrawn from the market to be distributed free to
schools. The free distribution of fruit and vegetables for other purposes is also possible, to charities and
institutions such as hospitals and prisons, for example.

To publicise that initiative Member States are to inform and help to establish contacts between producer
organisations and the schools or other institutions likely to help in the free distribution of the products.

However, high transport costs and the nature of the products require that such distribution be local. The
Community, wishing to support the distribution of withdrawn products, will take over some of the costs, in
particular the cost of transport between the withdrawal location and the delivery point, and also sorting and
packaging costs (in the case of citrus fruits and apples).

For the 1997/98 marketing year one-off aid is also available for the preparation of withdrawn products to allow
producer organisations to deliver them to schools and institutions.

Producer organisations withdrawing products must first make such products available for free distribution before
they can be sent for biodegradation.

(1) OJ L 297, 28.10.1996.