Monday 17 February 2020 | 46

Figures that kill...

Mis à jour le 31 August 2020

European statistics on animal experiments were made official on 5th February by a report from the Commission1, the last of its kind. The report was presented to elected representatives of the European Parliament. Six documents, thousands of pages of vast intrigue from which the animals are the losers. This is all but a smoke screen to hide more than 22 million animal victims in European laboratories!

Hr blog

Official figures from Brussels, compiling data from the 28 Member States in 2017, tell us less than 10 million victims in European laboratories, 9.58 million precisely.

We put it bluntly: this is a truncated, cosmetic vision, which does not take into account all the animals used directly or indirectly for scientific purposes! The symbolic bar of 10 million (they were 11.5 million in 2013) of animals used in various procedures was artificially obtained, because from this total all genetically modified animals, presented separately, and all animals reused several times. But not only…

Experiments carried out on foetal forms are not taken into account either, although the European Directive includes them in its boundaries². Animals killed to harvest organs and tissues, which are widely used in in vitro research, are also excluded. Yet all of them feel anguish and pain, and remain full victims, don't they?

And above all we forget a terrible figure, noted by scientists from the ECEAE, the European coalition that One Voice represents in France: some 12.6 million animals raised in the laboratories of the Union die or are euthanized without even having been "experimented on" because they are too old, too sick or simply useless.

How to play with the data...

By dint of statistical restatements and changes in scope, today in Europe as yesterday in France, comparisons are impossible, the reality is hidden.

A European regulation(3) introduced in June 2019 thus changed the standards for collecting national statistics. As a result, it is at best the end of 2022 that we will have consolidated figures in the new European format. They will be incomparable to those of previous years and perhaps by then a new boundary will confuse the old figures with the current ones, and the future ones. This game of three card brag can continue to envy in order to make the practices illegible for the citizens ...

Animals suffer more!

Any other bad news? Certainly! The proportion of animals reused in several consecutive experiments, the worst nightmare, remains stable (2%). We also see the level of suffering inflicted in laboratories increasing: the so-called procedures without awakening or with severe pain, the highest level, increased by 3% between 2016 and 2017. 17% of animals tested in European laboratories are subjected to these procedures to irreversible damage. That's huge, 429,000 animals in France alone in 2017!

Animals therefore remain the cannon fodder for "fundamental" research or applied to disorders or diagnoses intended for humans (while 90% of the results obtained by animal experiments are, in fact, not transposable to our medicine), or for tests on the toxicity of commercial products which involve lethal methods in more than one in three cases.

In France, the third most killer country in Europe, just behind the United Kingdom and Germany, 126 ethics committees are keeping an eye on the grain and spreading the message of increased respect for animals. The proof: Brussels notes, however, that in 2017, none of the 3,708 research projects submitted in France to ethical committees was refused. What doubts the vigilance of these committees, which often operate behind closed doors without respecting the rules of representation of members of civil societies in their debates.

An unbearable deception!

Animal welfare being a value, that is enshrined in Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. Europe claims as a final objective "the total replacement of the procedures applied to live animals for scientific or educational purposes", but specifies: "when it will be scientifically possible". At the same time, the Commission slashed the budget of the only European body responsible for promoting alternative methods ... So, let's not be surprised if the figures are disappointing, and especially if the method used reveals just a facade, behind which the worst horrors are endured purely for the profit of a system of killing.

Faced with a vast disinformation operation, and because we know the suffering at work in research structures or of their suppliers, such as in the case of the Mézilles dog farm, One Voice remains all the more mobilized on this black issue, called animal experimentation!
2 Directive 2010/63/EU
Règlement (EU) 2019/10102, OJ L 170, 25.6.2019, p. 115–127
4 L’EURL ECVAM avait un budget de 8 millions d’euros en 2016, de 6,5 millions en 2017...

Frédéric Rideau
Hr blog

In the subject

Endless agony for macaques in laboratories Silabe, an establishment within the University of Strasbourg, at the heart of the international trade in monkeys for animal experimentation

Comments 46

I accept that publication of my comments is subject to the code of conduct.

Marie-Christine. | Thursday 25 March 2021

"Science sans conscience n'est que ruine de l'âme" écrivait déjà RABELAIS au XVIème siècle ! Et nous au XXIème sommes encore au Moyen-Age, quelle honte et quelle absurdité !!!

GIBBON | Tuesday 09 March 2021

Mon pseudo "GIBBON" qui me tient à cœur car les massacres de ces pauvres petits êtres sont horribles et doivent cesser de suite!

voyageure | Friday 26 June 2020

Je signe cette pétition contre l'utilisation des animaux dans les laboratoires.

Chantal | Tuesday 23 June 2020

Je trouve cela horrifiant et insoutenable?
Toute cette soufrance que subissent ces animaux,
Arrêtons ces expériences barbares sur les animaux.