Export of live pigs from UK can restart

On 4 December 2001, the EU’s Standing Veterinary Committee (SVC) voted in favour of a European Commission proposal allowing the UK to export live pigs from certain areas, for the first time since the foot-and-mouth crisis. The areas from which the UK is allowed to export fresh meat from bovine, ovine and caprine animals have also been extended.

The areas affected by the vote are those that have had no outbreak since the beginning of the epidemic: the Scottish Islands, most of Scotland, some counties in the east of Great Britain and a few counties in Wales.

The UK will now also be allowed to export fresh meat from bovine, ovine and caprine and porcine animals from Devon, Herefordshire, Lancashire and Powys.

 

British pigmeat exports last year were mainly to the EU and were valued at £183 million for 214,000 tonnes of meat. Earlier this year, the highly infectious foot-and-mouth disease hit more than 2,000 farms in Britain and led to the slaughter of nearly four million animals.

Some UK pigmeat export restrictions on Northern Ireland had already been lifted on 7 June. On 10 October, the EU's Standing Veterinary Committee recommended that pigmeat from certain areas in the UK should be allowed again for export under strict conditions.

On 24 October, the Standing Committee voted in favour of a Commission proposal extending the area from where Britain is allowed to export fresh pigmeat and beef. The extension concerned all the counties that had no outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease or remained free of the disease for more than three months.

 

The proposal still has to be formally adopted by the Commission and will enter into force as soon as adopted.

 

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