Meat Industry May Soon Be Operating

SCOTLAND - Scotland's red meat industry could be operational again as early as tomorrow as long as there is no further spread of foot-and-mouth, writes Ewan Pate, farming editor.
calendar icon 7 August 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
Speaking after a hastily convened meeting of industry stakeholders in Edinburgh yesterday Cabinet Minister for Rural Affairs Richard Lochhead confirmed that pigs, cattle and sheep could be moved directly from farms to slaughter under certain very strict conditions.

Licences could be issued late today for movement tomorrow. There will be no multiple pickups from different farms and the transport must go straight to the abattoirs.

The abattoirs will need inspectors from the Meat Hygiene Service present at all times and facilities for disinfecting vehicles must be in place. Animals must be slaughtered within 24 hours.

This move will come as a considerable relief to an industry which normally processes 9000 cattle, 14,000 pigs and 32,000 sheep in Scotland every week. A further 30,000 sheep per week are transported south of the border, mostly to Wales, for slaughter. The total value is around £9.5 million per week.

Pre 1996 cattle are excluded from this relaxation on the movement ban and are not regarded as priority at the moment.

Chief veterinary officer for Scotland Charles Milne explained that the licensing for movement direct to slaughter was one step in a procedure.

Source: Scotland Courier
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