Consultation on changes to the identification of equines

Closed 16 May 2017

Opened 5 Apr 2017


This consultation concerns the introduction of new equine identification regulations in England. It seeks views on our proposals for the implementation of the revised EU regulation on the rules for the identification of equines in England. This revised regulation, EU regulation 2015/262, came into effect throughout all European Member States on1 January 2016. It forms part of the EU Commission’s Five Point Action Plan on Food fraud which included a strengthening of the horse passport regime.

The purpose of this revised regulation which is primarily a human health measure is to strengthen the existing system of ‘Horse Passports’ and is essentially designed to ensure that certain horses do not enter the human food chain.

Please read the Consultation Document and, where necessary, the Impact Assessment (IA) before considering the questions in this online survey. The Consultation Document sets our proposals in full alongside background information while the Impact Assessment summarises the available evidence and economic impacts of our proposals.

Why your views matter

The consultation is gathering views on the proposed changes to equine identification legislation relevant to England. We are interested to hear from anyone, and would particularly like to hear from English Horse Passport Issuing Organisations; the equine sector in England, individuals and organisations, welfare organisations and Local Authorities within England.

We value your comments and time taken in responding to our consultation.

What happens next

Defra is  carefully analysing and considering all of the responses submitted to this consultation and we will  complete our detailed assessment before we make our final decision on the shape our domestic Regulations.

We will summarise the responses to our consultation, including issues raised and our views on those issues and publish it on our website.

We are targeting publishing our 'summary of responses' document as soon as possible.


  • Animal welfare campaigners
  • Food Industry
  • Vets
  • National Park Authorities
  • Local Authorities
  • Pet Owners
  • Veterinarians
  • Local Authorities
  • Horse riders
  • SME businesses
  • Leisure industry
  • Trading Standards Officers
  • Public Bodies


  • Animals
  • Animal welfare
  • Livestock identification and movement