Supermarkets Urged to Adopt Three-point Waste Food Protocol

UK - If swill-feeding of pigs is reintroduced in the European Union, sooner or later there will be a breakdown in controls, resulting in a major disease outbreak, which will in turn have a devastating impact on all actors in the European food chain, said National Pig Association (NPA) in a letter to supermarket chiefs.
calendar icon 4 November 2013
clock icon 3 minute read

To ensure a sustainable and secure domestic supply of British pig meat it is essential that high biosecurity standards are maintained, says chairman Richard Longthorp.

He urged retailers to agree and support NPA's three-point protocol to keep foot-and-mouth, classical swine fever and African swine fever out of the British pig herd.

  1. In-date food that is wasted should be donated to charities such as FareShare and diverted for human consumption.

  2. Food fit for animal consumption but not human that is either produced during product manufacture in a meat-free plant, or that is packaged and handled through a registered Feed Materials Assurance Scheme company can be diverted to pig feed.

  3. Unpackaged food at store level or food that is not fit for consumption should be diverted to anaerobic digestion or in-vessel composting. Such processes provide a useful output in the form of energy (heat and power), remove any undesirable pathogens and convert the final product into a safe and low odour fertiliser therefore reducing reliance on artificial fertiliser.

"As a nation, we must all commit to reducing food waste to a minimum and then to utilising the remaining unavoidable waste appropriately," said NPA.

"The pig industry already uses over one million tonnes of food co- and by-products from the human food chain that would otherwise be destined for landfill or similar on an annual basis, which is all fed in a perfectly safe and controlled manner, mainly in the form of rapemeal, wheatfeed, biscuitmeal, cake, bread, cereal products, starch extraction products and whey.

"Indeed 40-50 per cent of the ingredients used in compound pig feed are by-products from the food and drink industry in one form or another.

"Over the past ten years we in the pig industry have reduced the inclusion of soya by approximately half via supplementing rapemeal, peas and beans and distillers' waste and continue to research other protein sources to reduce this further. And we are currently investigating additional safe food waste streams which could be utilised by the pig industry in future."

You can view NPA's position statement on waste food by clicking here.

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