European Council Fails to End Bullfighting Subsidies – but This Is Not the End

Posted by on November 20, 2015 | Permalink

Last week, following a historic vote in the European Parliament, we urged European Union finance ministers to act to end EU subsidies for bullfighting.

Sadly, that didn’t happen – but this is just one setback in a campaign that’s gaining momentum all the time.

PETA France protests EU bullfighting subsidies

In October, 438 out of 687 MEPs in the European Parliament voted in favour of an amendment to the EU budget that would stop more than €100 million in EU agricultural subsidies from going to support bullfights. This was a huge step forward, especially considering that the Parliament had rejected similar proposals time and time again in previous years.

But changes to the budget also have to be approved by the Council of the European Union, in the form of a committee made up of finance ministers and selected MEPs. Unfortunately, despite hearing from thousands of compassionate Europeans, the Council didn’t include the amendment in its final agreement, meaning that, frustratingly, the subsidies will continue for at least another year.

This is certainly a disappointment but one that can be overcome. The Council didn’t reject the amendment on principle but rather on the grounds that the regulations surrounding the Common Agricultural Policy would make it difficult to implement the change. It may take a little longer to untangle the complex processes that allow farmers to use taxpayer money to raise bulls for bullfights, but now, thanks in part to your actions, this issue is firmly on the political radar.

Next year, when EU leaders review the budget again, we’ll be back campaigning with renewed vigour – and, we hope, your continuing support!