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Journal Articles Animals Year : 2023

The Flourishing Camel Milk Market and Concerns about Animal Welfare and Legislation

Abstract

The worldwide dromedary milk production has increased sharply since the beginning of this century due to prolonged shelf life, improved food-safety and perceived health benefits. Scientific confirmation of health claims will expand the market of dromedary milk further. As a result, more and more dromedaries will be bred for one purpose only: the highest possible milk production. However, intensive dromedary farming systems have consequences for animal welfare and may lead to genetic changes. Tighter regulations will be implemented to restrict commercialization of raw milk. Protocols controlling welfare of dromedaries and gene databases of milk-dromedaries will prevent negative consequences of intensive farming. In countries where dromedaries have only recently been introduced as production animal, legislators have limited expertise on this species. This is exemplified by an assessment on behalf of the Dutch government, recommending prohibiting keeping this species from 2024 onwards because the dromedary was deemed to be insufficiently domesticated. Implementation of this recommendation in Dutch law would have devastating effects on existing dromedary farms and could also pave the way for adopting similar measures in other European countries. In this paper it is shown that the Dutch assessment lacks scientific rigor. Awareness of breeders and legislators for the increasing knowledge about dromedaries and their products would strengthen the position of dromedaries as one of the most adapted and sustainable animals.
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hal-03969852 , version 1 (02-02-2023)

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Marcel Smits, Han Joosten, Bernard Faye, Pamela A Burger. The Flourishing Camel Milk Market and Concerns about Animal Welfare and Legislation. Animals, 2023, 13 (1), pp.47. ⟨10.3390/ani13010047⟩. ⟨hal-03969852⟩
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