Student project about CAP-subsidies and bullfighting

Traditional bullfighting still exists in 8 countries: Spain, Portugal, France, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and Venezuela. Besides this, in many different countries (patronal) festivals take place with bulls and cows. Only in Spain there are 18.000 so called ‘fiestas’ with bulls and cows every year. This causes a lot of animal suffering obviously.

Many people wonder how bullfighting can still exist in the EU and why it is legal. Unfortunately, the EU excludes cultural, traditional and religious practices with animals from the animal welfare legislation. It is up to the Member States to decide what to allow. However, every year at least 130 million euros of EU agricultural subsidies from the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) are received by breeders of fighting bulls. In the European Parliament different proposals to stop this are adopted over the years, but without any practical consequences.

From CAS International we would like to explore possibilities to do something during the revision of the CAP towards 2027 that ensures that no agricultural subsidies end up with breeders of fighting bulls. We search for a student who can help us with this through a thesis or internship by mapping out for us how the CAP and payments to bull breeders work and via what ways within the CAP they are paid. We would be greatly helped in the first place by a nice overview of how the CAP works and how farmers (including breeders of fighting bulls) receive subsidies and under what conditions. More specifically, the research can include how Spain (and perhaps Portugal and France) divides the subsidies. Subsequently, we would like to gain insight into which routes we could take (also through lobbying for example) to ensure that things are arranged differently in the new CAP after 2027.

About CAS

CAS International (Comité Anti Stierenvechten in Dutch) is a Dutch NGO committed to end bullfighting and comparable cultural events that cause animal suffering. CAS International was founded in 1993 on request of Spanish animal protectors in order to inform Dutch and Belgian tourists about bullfighting and the animal suffering that it causes. Since the beginning we have developed to an organisation that does much more than informing the public. We are now also involved in lobby and legal cases. Furthermore, we are coordinator of the International Anti-Bullfighting Network of more than 100 organizations from 17 countries. On our website you can read more about our organization.

What we offer

Since we are a small NGO with only 2 employees we cannot offer much, except for some experience in working for an NGO and cooperating with other NGO’s within among others the Dutch ‘Dierencoalitie’ and Eurogroup for Animals. We work mainly from home, but one day a week we work in our flexible office in Utrecht. Travelling costs will be refunded in case you do not have free travel for students.

Who we look for

We look for a motivated student who can work independently and has a heart for animals and animal protection. You should have a good level of English and good writing and reporting skills. It would be fantastic if you also can speak/read some Spanish, but this is not a must. In case of an internship, you can also do some other activities within our organisation, such as writing news items, campaigning, thinking with us about strategies etc. You will in any case learn a lot about bullfighting and why it still exists and about working for a small NGO.


In case you are interested in helping us out on the questions we have, please send your motivation and cv to Maite van Gerwen (director of CAS International), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.