Scientists are carrying out tests to determine whether the use of pig and
chicken carcasses as fodder could be resumed without posing any human health
risks, which should urge the European Commission to end a ban on using animal
remains in farm feed.
The ban, brought in across Europe in 2000, followed
fears that the practice caused the spread of BSE, or "mad cow disease". However,
farmers are not happy with this ban. Carcasses which would otherwise be used as
protein in animal feed must be thrown away, and the extra demand for vegetable
protein since the ban has kept feed prices high.
According to the
Economic and Social Committee, the use of meat meal from non-ruminants can be
used in pig and poultry feed without posing any danger to human health. Although
this committee has no legislative power but routinely delivers opinions on
proposed EU rules, it is trying to push for an end to the
ban.BSE in Britain
Spokeswoman for the Department
for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said: "In the EU's Roadmap for
tackling BSE, published in July 2005, there is a proposal to relax this ban in
the future." She added: "There are currently no specific EU proposals relating
to pig meat or poultry meat on the table." The annual incidence of BSE in
Britain is now regarded as being at an acceptable level.Farmers'
Beef farmer Charles Haigh, of Tingley, near Leeds commented:
"Now that great progress has been made in eliminating BSE and in the ability to
process waste materials then I think that animal remains should again be used in
farm feeds. "Recycling waste products would benefit farmers and the economy in
general. We are supposed to be living in a green
Defra European Commission Economic and Social
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