Reaction to the Fair Finance Guide report on barn fires
19 October 2017
Today the Fair Finance Guide (“Eerlijke Bankwijzer”) published a report about the link between financial institutions and certain clients that were involved in barn fires where thousands of animals died.
These fires were tragedies, there is no mistaking that. The concrete causes of these fires are not yet known. Farmers take fire prevention measures that are based on extensive national and municipal laws and regulations.
Following these incidents, ING has entered into a dialogue with representative sector organisations, concerned NGOs and the clients where the barn fires occurred. Parallel talks are also taking place between insurers, the Animal Protection Society (“De Dierenbescherming”) and other relevant parties.
Our goal for participating in this dialogue is to get an answer about what caused the fires and to jointly think of effective ways to reduce them. That is vitally important for animal welfare reasons first and foremost, but also for the livelihood of the barn owners, and for other stakeholders. These talks are still ongoing. It is therefore too early to indicate which solutions and follow-up steps will be taken.
We find it positive that the newly formed Dutch Cabinet’s government agreement (“Regeerakkoord”) addresses this issue as well, and look forward to more concrete measures being taken to help avoid these kind of fires.
ING is in general keen to help create safer living conditions for animals by supporting our clients in this endeavour. More information about our stance on animal welfare can be found on our website. The current ING animal welfare policy is published here.