Belgium - Flanders




Flemish Animal Welfare Council (‘Vlaamse Raad voor Dierenwelzijn’)


Web address


Scope/mission statement

The Flemish Animal Welfare Council advises the Flemish Minister for Animal Welfare on animal welfare topics, at the request of the Minister him/herself, the Animal Welfare Department or members of the Council. The opinions take into account the latest scientific, ethical and social developments.


The AWC is composed of maximum 19 members, including 5 members of the Executive Board. These latter are experts from universities, known for their work in relation to animal welfare or ethics. Besides the experts, the animal welfare council consists of representatives from an animal welfare organization, shelters and other associations ensuring producers’, breeders’, consumers’ and veterinarians’ rights.


Working Methods 
The Minister, the Flemish Animal Welfare Department or a member of the Council asks the Council for an opinion on a specific subject. This request is scheduled in the agenda of the Executive Board. The Council appoints a coordinator for the working group and assigns a scientific advisor to the subject. The scientific advisor prepares, in consultation with the coordinator, a scientific report including a scientific literature review, the relevant legislation in other countries, and practical information. The Executive Board assesses the report and delivers a scientific opinion.

The coordinator sets up a working group of maximum 10 representatives from all parties involved. The working group discusses the subject and issues an opinion which has to be submitted successively to the Executive Board and the Council for adoption. Once adopted, the opinion is sent to the Minister.



Publications are available on


Contact details
Flemish Animal Welfare Council
Department of Environment and Spatial Development  
Koning Albert II-laan 20 box 8 B-1000 Brussels