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Resumption of Scottish Meat Exports Welcomed by Some
12/10/07

Some Scottish producers will breathe a weary sigh of relief as the export market for Scottish meat reopens today (Friday, October 12) following months of turmoil.

Jim McLaren, NFU Scotland President

Jim McLaren, NFU Scotland President

The move is indeed a welcome step along the way to normal trading. However, although the much-needed export of Scottish beef, pork and lamb will recommence, only those farms able to meet the strict on-farm requirements will be able to supply the demand for Scottish produce from the rest of Europe.

Meat is only eligible for export if:

  • it originates from animals that have been reared for 90 days in areas where no FMD has been present. This includes the whole of Scotland.
  • it originates from animals that have been kept in a single holding of origin for the last 30 days (a holding is defined by the County/Parish/Holding (CPH) number)
  • there have been no live animal movements to the holding for 21 days before animals moved for slaughter (for pigs, only 7 days if the supplying holding complies with conditions above)
  • there is only single pick-up to abattoir

NFU Scotland has welcomed clarification from the Scottish Government that the rules related to export requirements will only apply at a holding rather than business level. That means that a farm business which involves two or more holdings may be able to use one holding to supply the export market while using the other holding or holdings to carry out day-to-day farm management and supply the home market.

Jim McLaren, NFU Scotland President, said:

“This news will be welcomed by those who are in a position to benefit from it. However, these export conditions are stringent and so there will be a large number of producers whose situation will not change significantly tomorrow.

“Live animal exports are still not permitted so those rearing dairy bull calves for export will not be rejoicing. We must also remember that even when meat can start moving to Europe again there is inevitably going to be a backlog which will mean that benefits won’t be instantaneous.

“Nevertheless, this news is an important step towards a return to normality and we look forward to more such steps next week when restrictions are lifted on 17 October.”

link Sheep Welfare Scheme an ‘Awful Necessity’, says NFUS
link Foot & Mouth Restrictions to be Lifted on 17 October - NFUS
link UK Government Must Compensate, Says NFUS

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NFU Scotland