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Hormone Growth Promoters

The use of hormonal growth promoters has been banned in the European Union since 1988. Third countries that permit the use of growth promoting hormones cannot export to the EU any animals or meat produced using these substances.
This ban on growth promoting hormones is enacted in the UK’s Animals and Animal Products (Examination for Residues and Maximum Residue Limits) Regulations 1997. The Regulations implement the EU Council Directive 96/22/EC concerning the prohibition on the use in animal rearing of beta-agonists, and hormonal and thyrostatic substances.

Bovine Somatotrophin

The use and marketing of the genetically engineered milk-boosting hormone, Bovine Somatotrophin (BST) in dairy cattle has been banned in the EU since 1st January 2000. This followed a 10-year moratorium on the use of BST in the EU.
BST boosts the milk production of dairy cows by 10-20%. The sale and use of BST was banned because of its adverse effects on the welfare of dairy cows. BST can cause tender and long-lasting swellings at the injection site. It also causes increased incidences of mastitis, a painful udder infection.1


D’Silva, J., 1998. BST – A Distressing Product: An Analysis of the Health and Welfare Problems of Dairy Cows Injected with BST. Compassion In World Farming. Petersfield: Hampshire.


Farm Animals | Action Alerts | European Farm Laws | ARI Campaigns | Henry Spira