OATA is a member of the European Pet Organization (EPO) which recently held its AGM. Below is the press release sent out following the meeting by EPO.

Due to the COVID19 exceptional situation, this year EPO Assembly General Meeting took place virtually on September 1st, 2020.

Aside from adopting both the Secretary General report and the organization’s yearly budget, the EPO members have re-appointed as President, Svein A. Fosså (from NZB, Norway) and as Treasurer, Norbert Holthenrich (from ZZF, Germany) – as members of its Board.

Svein A. Fosså commented on his reelection by stating:

“In this time and situation, I couldn’t refuse reelection when our members asked for it. The Covid-19 pandemic does not only make it difficult for people to meet; the situation is also misused by a broad range of organizations and activists to call for severe restrictions in people’s possibilities to keep pets – and EPO has to be there as a strong and visible counterweight. Like many, the responsible pet trade wants to end the unsustainable use and illegal trafficking of wildlife. But these key challenges are being marginalized by the unrealistic calls for blanket bans.

EPO and our members stand ready to work collaboratively with governments, NGOs and other stakeholder communities to identify realistic, scientifically supportable and evidence-based solutions to reduce unsafe, illegal and unsustainable use while supporting sustainable and well-managed.”

The EPO board is also composed of two vice Presidents with Dominic Whitmee (from OATA, UK) and Klaus Krachbüchler (from WKO, Austria).

Created in Vienna in April 1990, the European Pet Organization (EPO) is the voice of European Pet Trade Associations in Europe. EPO protects and promotes the interests of the European pet industry within the EU and international arena.

EPO represents 10 trade associations in 10 countries representing thousands of enterprises, many of which are SMEs or micro businesses.

Its member organizations include for each country:

  • Austria: WKO
  • France: PRODAF
  • Germany: ZZF
  • Italy: AIPA
  • Norway: NZB
  • Spain: AEDPAC
  • Sweden: ZOORF
  • Switzerland: VZFS
  • The Netherlands: DIBEVO
  • United Kingdom: OATA