The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) has followed the British Poultry Council (BPC) in calling for more concerted action from government to support meat processors in the UK. The BMPA is particularly critical of the confusion between government departments in handling this issue.
Like the BPC, the BMPA welcomed the report published today [July 24] by the parliamentary Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) committee, which poured scorn on the EC’s “seriously flawed” decision to ban DSM.
BMPA director Stephen Rossides said: “The Committee’s report is spot on both in identifying the key issues surrounding the moratorium debacle, and in its recommendations about the lessons to be learned and the steps that need to be taken.”
Lift DSM moratorium
Rossides added: “We welcome the Committee’s statement that the government must seek support from other EU Member States for the UK position, and press the Commission to lift the moratorium.
“The report is quite right to highlight as ‘totally unacceptable’ the potential for wrongly labelled or unlawful products to be imported into the UK to replace UK-produced DSM.”
Rossides echoed the “confusion in roles” identified in the report between the Food Standards Agency (FSA), Department of Health and Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in the way the issue was handled. He added that the situation needed to be clarified and improved.
Rossides said: “As the report identifies, the FSA makes much of its view that its role is not to promote or protect the industry, yet it is FSA officials, not ministers, that have been negotiating with the EC on this important issue which has a huge impact on the meat industry. The meat industry needs a champion in government. Like the Committee, we would welcome closer DEFRA involvement on the matter.”