New EU welfare regulations
The British pig industry have continued to campaign vigorously for proper enforcement of the new EU welfare regulations across Europe, but data released by the EU Commission suggest that many Member States are falling well short of full compliance.
The British pig industry interests have continued to ‘bang the drum’ about lack of enforcement of the new rules across the EU and the prospects of ‘illegally produced’ pig meat flooding onto the market. Although it will be a few months before any ‘illegally produced’ pig meat could possibly arrive in the UK, due to the four to five months it takes to produce a finished pig for slaughter, this has not diminished their campaigning efforts.
The latest initiative launched by the National Pig Association is the 'Wall of Fame (or Shame)' and retailers and meat processors will be asked to sign a pledge stating that “all of the pork we use has come from legal farms”.
BPEX have launched a new trade campaign, supported by a new website 'Compliant Pork' including regular updates on levels of compliance across the EU.
BPEX also continued their current promotional activity, ‘Give a fork about your pork’ on Channel 4, urging consumers to look out for the Red Tractor mark, when choosing their pork, bacon and sausages. The campaign is being fronted by farmer and TV presenter Jimmy Doherty.
Information released by the EU Commission suggested that only 10 out of the 27 Member States are 100% compliant with the new regulations, with a further 5 at least 98% compliant.
100%: Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, United Kingdom
99%: Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy
98%: Finland, Netherlands
82%: Greece, Ireland
The figure given for Denmark was 94%, based on figures supplied by the Danish government, linked to research (300 telephone interviews) undertaken in November 2012 and may not reflect the real situation ‘on the ground’ today.
The Danish authorities have made it clear that any farmers found to have disregarded their responsibilities in observing the new rules will be dealt with severely under the process of law and will forfeit their entitlement to support under the EU Single Farm Payments.
In addition, the traceability and control systems operating within the industry will ensure that all Danish pig meat delivered to the UK market will fully comply with all EU and Danish legislation.