Fearless Dutch put too-hot-to-handle transport regs back on the agenda

by 5m Editor
13 October 2004, at 12:00am

UK - Brussels' ambitions to reform welfare-in-transit rules proved too hot to handle, with the northern countries of Europe generally in favour of reform, the southern countries wondering what all the fuss was about, and members of the European Parliament apparently wanting to see all animals herded to their destination on foot.


National Pig Association

NPA is active on members' behalf in Brussels & Whitehall, and with processors, supermarkets & caterers - fighting for the growth and pros-perity of the UK pig industry.

The latter were sharply told to grow up by the European Commission. But even so any kind of consensus proved impossible and for six months or so reform plans have been gathering dust in a tray marked "Leave for the next presidency". The presidency is now with the Dutch and they have picked up the dossier and pledged to get reform sorted out in a matter of weeks.

Last week discussions were held at a chief veterinary officers meeting to see if there was broad support for a revival of the regulation and as there was, the Dutch have set an ambitious timetable, starting with a working group next week and culminating at November's agriculture council meeting (on November 22).

In their present form the reforms would load extra costs on Britain's genetics companies and might also present serious problems for Britain's multi-site operators, many of whom are having to seek finishing facilities many miles from breeding units.

NPA has been working with pig producers across Europe in a bid to have the proposed reforms amended. It argues, with the Danes, that plans to reduce the number of animals that can be carried could prove deleterious to welfare.

Source: National Pig Association - 13th October 2004

5m Editor