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Poultry Board Chairman's Pledge on EU Lobbying

by 5m Editor
14 October 2010, at 10:54a.m.

UK - Concerns over the Welfare of Laying Hens Directive were top of the agenda when poultry board chairman Charles Bourns addressed NFU Council this week.

The Directive comes into force on 1 January 2011 and the NFU is lobbying MPs and MEPs to ensure that derogations are not agreed for European countries which have not prepared for the new regulations.

Poland has already asked for, and been refused, a derogation for the 30 million hens which it anticipates will remain in conventional rather than ‘enriched' cages, as the deadline passes.

Mr Bourns made a personal and board commitment to the many UK farming families that have invested in enriched cages to continuing lobby against any derogations for other European countries.

In other matters it was reported that a number of poultry businesses have found that their residential neighbours are taking advantage of IPPC permit rules on odours, with the result that the Environment Agency has asked that sheds be taken out of production.

The poultry board is supporting such businesses in their negotiations with the agency and a number of the cases analysed by the NFU have been found to be erroneous.

Mr Bourns also reported that the free range market is still in over supply at wholesale level resulting in packers cutting producer prices.