POTENTIAL extra costs for the British pig industry are likely to be averted provided final agreement is given by the EU over testing for Trichinella. The move comes after work by the British Pig Executive (BPEX), the Food Standards Agency and the National Pig Association.
At present UK pigs are not tested because of the extremely low risk and a clause to this effect has been included in proposed EU regulations on testing.
A case is now being put together for the UK to continue its current position as there is negligible of risk in domestic pigs. An extensive testing system is in place for sows being exported and that has not shown a positive since 1979.
BPEX Chief Executive Mick Sloyan said: "If a full testing regime had been introduced it could have put a huge cost burden onto an already stretched industry.
"We are delighted the hard work by the industry and government acting together has borne fruit."
The derogation would allow fattening pigs to go through untested but sows, boars, wild boar and horses would have to be tested and the MHS is currently planning the implementation of the new regime.