PRESSURE groups Compassion in World Farming and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have both condemned the new rules.
CIWF political and legal director Peter Stevenson said: "The EU agriculture ministers have tried to get away with a few marginal changes but the harsh reality is that they have given the green light for the cruel live trade to continue to flourish."
A small step in the right direction was the verdict of the RSPCAs head of farm animals, Dr Martin Potter.
"It doesnt lay down a maximum eight-hour journey time for the vast majority of animals in transit. Animals will, therefore, continue to suffer long and stressful journeys of up to 31 hours – legally – across Europe."