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Govt Help Required on Battery Ban

by 5m Editor
11 January 2008, at 11:14am

UK - The 2012 EU ban on battery cage egg production will be worse than useless in improving chicken welfare if the same standards are not applied to imports, warns the NFU and it has called on the Government to set an example in its own food procurement policies.


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"We also want to see the Government giving a lead on this issue, instead of applying the same old double standards"
NFU Poultry Board Chairman Charles Bourns

NFU Poultry Board Chairman Charles Bourns said egg producers were prepared to accept the battery cage ban as long as it did not lead to the export of the egg industry to countries with lower standards of chicken welfare.

"The fact that the EU has said it is not going to extend the deadline for outlawing the present generation of battery cages does at least remove any uncertainty", said Mr. Bourns.

"But it will be pointless and counter-productive if we do not extend the same level of welfare to all of the chickens involved in supplying eggs to the European market, not just those chickens that happen to be housed in the EU.

"We also want to see the Government giving a lead on this issue, instead of applying the same old double standards.

"While Hilary Benn has been crowing about the cage ban, and making much of his commitment to animal welfare, Government departments are still sourcing over 40 per cent of their food from imports, including products like chicken, eggs, pork and bacon from countries which are still using systems that would either be illegal in this country or which would be unacceptable under our farm assurance protocols."

5m Editor