EU threat to sheep industry
PUBLISHED: 10:53 09 April 2008 | UPDATED: 08:23 28 March 2014
APRIL 8, 2008: The European Commission's plans to introduce compulsory electronic
identification (EID) for sheep could lead to a significant number of
farmers leaving the industry, the NFU has warned.
industry and government representatives from around the UK met with
members of the Commission last week to raise long-standing concerns
about the compulsory introduction of EID, which is expected to take
place in 2010.
Following the meeting, NFU livestock board
chairman Alistair Mackintosh said little headway had been made in
meeting farmers' concerns over the cost implications and practicality
of the proposed system.
He said: "If it is implemented in its
current form, this plan could lead to a significant number of farmers
leaving the industry. The NFU will continue to oppose the plan despite
Brussels' determination to impose another raft of unnecessary
regulation that we don't need and can ill-afford to pay for.
imposition of EID has little to offer farmers in terms of greater
efficiency and we would question its value in helping to control
disease. The system we currently have in place is more than capable of
tracing sheep back to their original holding.
Commission is insistent that EID will have to be introduced by 2010
and, while there are certain areas that appear non-negotiable, the NFU
has identified a number of areas where flexibility may be possible to
reduce the impact on the UK sheep industry."
legislation, all animals born after December 31 2009 must be identified
with an electronic form of identification, and the movement of each
animal must be recorded and reported.