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Consumers Oppose Animal Protein in Feed

by 5m Editor
6 September 2011, at 10:19a.m.

UK - The majority of people taking part in research commissioned by the Food Standards Agency were against European Union (EU) proposals to relax a ban on using processed animal protein (PAP) in livestock feed for chicken and pigs.

The Food Standards Agency’s Board will be discussing the EU proposal tomorrow, 7 September.

In response to European Commission proposals that could see PAP used in UK livestock feed for the first time since 2001 (1996 in the case of pig protein), the Agency commissioned qualitative research with 80 people to gauge the public’s attitude towards a change in the current ban.

The results show that, having considered the risks and potential benefits of the proposals to relax the ban on pig and poultry feed, most of the participants involved in the research were against changes to the current restrictions.

After receiving detailed information about the European Commission’s proposals, six out of the eight focus groups involved supported a continuation of the ban, with one group 'neutral' and the other 'for' relaxing the ban.

The main reasons for opposing a relaxation of the ban were concerns about health risks, a lack of scientific knowledge about how diseases like BSE spread and concern about whether there were any benefits to the consumer.

While respondents discussed the potential economic and environmental benefits of the proposals, such as less wastage of meat by-products and a reduction in carbon emissions from importing soya – currently used as an alternative for PAP – from abroad, they felt that relaxing the ban would be a backwards step.