The first week of September 2013 was the deadline by which European Union (EU) member states of the EU-28 group of countries must inform the European Commission of their progress in implementing the requirement for all sows to be in loose housing for gestation. A failure to supply the information could result in the particular country being referred to the European Court of Justice and penalized financially for infringement. 

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Under rules introduced by the European Union, from January, 1 2013, all pregnant sows in EU herds must be loose-housed rather than in individual confinement stalls or crates.