The European Parliament has adopted the first step toward ending the use of cages for farmed animals.

MEPs requested the EU Commission to come up with legislative measures to ban caged farming in response to a petition that received 1.4 million signatures from more than 18 member states over the previous several months.

The European Parliament, in a resolution on the ‘End the Cage Age’ European Citizens’ Initiative, asked the European Commission to make cages for farmed animals illegal across the European Union by 2027.

The motion received a resounding majority of 558 votes in favour, 37 votes against, and 85 abstentions in the European Parliament.

The vote marked a “historical day” in the campaign for a cage-free Europe, according to Green MEP Eleonora Evi, co-chair of the working group on cage-free farming.

“By adopting with a large majority a resolution, the European Parliament brought the EU a step closer to finally ending the cruel practice of caged farming, which every year condemns over 300 million animals to live in a cage,” she said.

Olga Kikou, the EU’s head of compassion in international agriculture, expressed her satisfaction that the European Parliament had adopted a hard position against cages.

“The time has come now for politicians to put words into action. From today on, the ball is in the Commission’s court,” she said, stressing that she expects “nothing short of an ambitious timetable for ending the use of these outdated torture instruments called cages”.

“Once this happens, the EU could truly claim global leadership in animal welfare,” she said.

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