U-turn on welfare guidance a 'dangerous precedent'

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We'res urging Defra to continue work with farming organisations to replace the out-of-date statutory codes which Defra has just announced it will retain.

NFU Deputy President Minette Batters said: “It’s extremely concerning to us that Defra is rescinding the jointly-owned animal welfare guidance - it sets a dangerous precedent for both government and our industry.

“Reversing considerable efforts to replace older, out-of-date guidance in the face of sensationalist pressure from campaigning groups undermines both government rationale and the importance of an up-to-date animal welfare code.

“The NFU, alongside other farming organisations, has been strengthening this guidance with scientific evidence, making it relevant to farming practices today. The guidance is one of the key tools farmers can refer to when health planning for their herd or flock and to disregard such an important resource shows little understanding of its value.

“The Secretary of State has publicly acknowledged that British farmers have the highest standards of animal welfare in the world. These standards are absolutely integral to the success of any farming business and the effort and investment from farmers is shown in the high quality produce that results from this care and attention.”

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