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Meeting to Merge Pig Industry with Other Sectors

by 5m Editor
16 May 2008, at 9:52am

SCOTLAND - A meeting, bringing the hospitality, retail and wholesale sectors together with Scotland's pig industry for the first time, was held yesterday.


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"I am confident that the food industry will continue to show appreciation for the high standards of welfare and animal husbandry that are required and so ably demonstrated by the Scottish pig sector."
Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs Richard Lochhead

This follows a commitment by the Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs Richard Lochhead to get the food industry and the pig sector around the same table.

Mr Lochhead said:

"This meeting has provided a unique opportunity to exchange views on how we can all work together to ensure the future sustainability of the pig sector.

"The pig industry has attached enormous importance to this meeting and I am delighted that we have been able to work with all concerned to make it happen.

"I am very grateful to all those who took the time to come along today, to listen and to discuss how the situation may be improved.

"I am acutely aware of the difficult situation the pig industry faces and I am committed to doing all we can to demonstrate our support for this vital sector.

"It is crucial we engage the whole food chain in finding solutions We want to promote mutual understanding of the problems facing different parts of the supply chain.

"I am confident that the food industry will continue to show appreciation for the high standards of welfare and animal husbandry that are required and so ably demonstrated by the Scottish pig sector."

This latest move follows a sustained effort by the Cabinet Secretary to support the Scottish pig industry.

Other measures already underway include:

  • A 330,000 strategic review into the pig sector to help develop market resilience
  • A 3300,000 project to look at adding value to the fifth quarter in the red meat sector
  • Writing to all major retailers to ask what they are doing to help ensure the long-term sustainability of the pig sector
  • Setting up a Task Force to examine the feasibility of proposals to alleviate pressure on the pig sector
  • Highlighting the difficulties facing the pig sector at the highest levels in the European Commission

The meeting held at the Scottish Parliament was attended by representatives from; the British Hospitality Association, Scottish Retail Consortium, major supermarkets, Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers, Scottish Federation of Meat Traders, Scottish Pig Producers, Scotlean Pigs, NFU Scotland, Quality Meat Scotland, Officer of Fair Trading and Campbell's Prime Meats.

Industry representatives have been appointed to a task force to examine the feasibility of proposals put to the Cabinet Secretary which could help ease pressure on the sector. Among the points to be considered by the task force are:

  • Introducing a vaccination programme for pig wasting disease
  • An audit of standards, transparency and labelling of imported pork
  • Improved food labelling
  • A support scheme for producers continuing in business

A total of 330,000 has been committed to a review of the pig industry by the Scottish Agricultural Organisation Society (SAOS) and 3300,000 to a fifth quarter added value project, both of which will benefit the pig industry in the long-term.