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Animal Welfare: Tour Operators

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 10th March 2020.

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Photo of Tracey Crouch Tracey Crouch Conservative, Chatham and Aylesford

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has made an assessment of the effectiveness of the animal welfare guidelines for tour operators published by ABTA in December 2019.

Photo of Victoria Prentis Victoria Prentis The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

British Travel Agents (ABTA) for tour operators. I particularly welcome the guide on elephant experiences which sets out clearly what practices are acceptable and what are unacceptable. Whilst Defra has not assessed their effectiveness specifically, I am encouraged that the British travel industry recognise the importance of protecting animal welfare and of providing advice to travel providers for their suppliers and destination tourist boards.

Tourists are becoming more aware of the impact tourism can have on both the environment and on animal welfare and can expect to question whether a particular animal-related experience is both animal welfare friendly and sustainable.

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