EU animal welfare standards are not good enough

The UK has had problems trying to get the EU to raise its minimum animal welfare standards. We have lost a lot of agricultural output to cheap imports from the continent.

The UK rightly imposes higher standards in some cases. For example, we ban sow stalls completely where the EU allows them for four weeks of use.

The EU allows the export of live animals within and outside the EU, permitting long and unregulated journeys beyond its borders.

When we leave the EU we will be free to set our own standards, which will be higher than EU minimum requirements. This makes animal welfare an odd argument for people to use who want us to stay in the EU system.

 

 

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70 Comments

  1. Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Yup – true.
    But on 30March 2017 we are not allowed to do any food, animal or vegetable trade with the EU as it stands at the moment. So all such trade will simply end when we leave the Single Market as Article 50 comes into force.
    Meanwhile, we are not allowed to complete any trade arrangements with other countries until that date.
    So there must be a gap.

    What is going to happen during that gap? Shelves in stores will empty, people will start to go hungry and then they will get very angry and start stealing – they will have to. People can go, it is said, just ten days without food.
    The negotiations will go on a lot longer than that.

    • Edward2
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      Your hysterical project fear knows no limits.
      Even if there was no deal done over the next 18 months and even if there was no transitional arrangements and even if there were no emergency laws passed allowing EU food into the UK then we could still buy from non EU countries and use UK made food that you claim we could not export.

    • Hope
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

      We had the horse meat in our meat products under EU regulations. Gove needs to wake up, Patterson was excellent as was Leadsome. Back stabbing Gove should be out on his ear.

      I am very concerned at the suggestion of a £50 divorce bill has been accepted and the transitional deal is to disguise this amount over a period of time! What sort of negotiation team accepts this? If true a few sackings and a quick reversal. Our,safety and security compromised and our public services are in a complete mess because of no,border controls and mass immigration. The Tory govt have failed to deliver over the last 7 years to fulfil what it promised the country. We were told the letter would be sent the day after the referendum, 9 months of unnecessary delay. How much has the continual delay leaving the EU cost us?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      You, and your mentor, deserve a thorough debunking by a rebuttal unit in David Davis’s department, except he can’t be bothered and there is no rebuttal unit.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted July 27, 2017 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        But maybe that is now changing?

  2. Tabulazero
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    But aren’t animal welfare typically the kind of non-tariff barriers bilateral FTA are meant to address?

    If the US and the UK were to sign a FTA very quickly post-Brexit, there is a high likelihood that the US will push to open the UK’s agricultural sector. Agricultural products are after all a major export of the US.

    Now, food safety standards are lower in the US than the EU. It is not only about chlorinated chickens but also the wide use of growth hormones or antibiotics.

    The thing I struggle to understand and where I would appreciate your opinion is the following: if the UK were to adopt the US food safety standards as part & parcel of a FTA agreement, then how can you reconcile that with a soft border in Ireland ?

    The EU is bound to take a dim view to the re-exportation of US products into the single-market via the UK.

    • alan jutson
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      Tabulazero

      As long as the products were clearly marked where they came from and what they contained, surely consumers make up their own mind.

      If you do not want an American Chicken, then do not buy one !

      The importers and Supermarkets would soon get the message if there was no demand.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted July 27, 2017 at 9:03 am | Permalink

        It’s more about how can you have a soft border between Northern Ireland and Ireland while you may have diverging food safety standard between the EU and the UK.

        At some stage, trucks carrying goods must be checked to avoid fraud.

        How can you reconcile that with a frictionless border ?

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted July 27, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

          But it’s nothing to do with food safety per se, and reportedly the EU’s own food safety agency has said it ‘would be of no safety concern’ from that angle. In fact you may be better off eating disinfected American chicken than infected European chicken:

          http://brexitcentral.com/consider-facts-chlorinated-chicken-relish-prospect-uk-us-free-trade-deal/

          • Tabulazero
            Posted July 28, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

            The odds that the EU review its ban on chlorinated chicken are slim.

            I seriously doubt it is going to change its opinion simply because it would make things easier for the UK to strike a FTA with the US that would include Poultry & Meat.

            Hence the question remains: how do you manage diverging food safety standards and an open border ?

    • David Ashton
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

      Off topic with regard to animal welfare, but to pick up on your concern about a soft Irish border. The Irish take EU directives and laws with a large pinch of salt. I have just returned from a visit to friends in the Republic. Our friends eldest son works for an Irish government agency, which has had a recruitment moratorium imposed on it since the financial crash, and is now suffering from mass retirements due to heavy recruitment in the 70’s and 80’s. He said this was great for him as he could work as many hours as he wished. I asked what about the EU maximum 48 hour rule. He just responded “this is Ireland” , and then added that he often works 48 hour shifts. I’m sure if US beef was cheaper than local beef it would cross the border, be re-labelled and enjoyed by the Irish consumers.

      Only the British obey the rules.

  3. Know-dice
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Rather than divert today’s topic…can we have one tomorrow covering the Government’s statement about banning new Petrol & Diesel cars from 2040.

    And on the chlorine washed chickens, as long as they are labelled as such, then people will have a choice and the market will decide…

    Thanks

    • DaveM
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      The whole chlorine-washed chicken issue is just another attempt by certain sections to overshadow any good news stories. The government could easily put it to bed thus:

      1. number of people who visited the US in 2016 = X million.
      2. number of people who ate chlorine-washed chicken in the US = Y million
      3. number of people who died as a result = 0???

      If chicken welfare is poor in the US, this will be widely publicised and people won’t buy it anyway if they object.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

        Indeed, and they tend not to use chlorine anyway.

      • alan jutson
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

        I wonder if a certain fast food outlet that has built is business and reputation on chicken, not only in the US but around the World is concerned about what chickens are washed in under controlled conditions, when the fat its fried in may, just may, be thought to be rather more of a problem by some.

      • rose
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

        Number of people who drink chlorinated tap water every day?
        Number of people who swim in chlorinated swimming pools, drinking and breathing in the fumes of chlorine?

  4. Sally
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    When we leave the EU I would also like to see labelling for halal meat (so I can avoid it – I don’t agree with this method of slaughter in this day and age) and if more food stuff is to come in from USA can anything that contains GMO ingredients also be mentioned so again, we are informed and can chose whether to buy it or not.

    I believe the British food shopper has the right to make informed choices in the manner of production (including slaughter methods) and the ingredients contained in products.

  5. Denis Cooper
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Off-topic, JR, it’s worth taking a look at the quarterly growth figures for the UK economy in the chart going back to 2008 which has just been published here:

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/live/2017/jul/26/uk-gdp-britain-economy-second-quarter-2017-live

    Contrary to the hysterical predictions of the Treasury, in the not-to-distant future those who did not already know when we held the EU referendum would be unable to find any significant clue in such a chart.

    Hopefully the same will apply to when we actually leave the EU.

  6. Posted July 26, 2017 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    You are expecting logic from the Remoaners. Surely you should know better!

  7. Denis Cooper
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    “This makes animal welfare an odd argument for people to use who want us to stay in the EU system.”

    Only if they’re honest people.

    Last year millions of honest people listened to the various arguments around the EU and formed their best judgement that overall it would be better if we stayed in.

    I think they came to the wrong conclusion, but I have no problem with them when they came to that conclusion honestly; just as in the past I have always accepted that some decent British citizens genuinely, rationally, and above all openly and honestly, support the absorption of the UK into a pan-European federation.

    On the other hand I do have a problem with time-wasting remoaning liars who will seize upon any rubbish argument to support their case knowing full well that it is rubbish but lacking the integrity to care.

    • Guy Knapton
      Posted July 31, 2017 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      You may have a problem with remoaners like me who cointest the views of leavers like Mr Redwood that are mistaken. The EU’s standards for the transport of animals are set in this Regulation: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32005R0001&from=en.
      Even I who am not a vet or a farmer understand that these standards, when implemented in the Member States, afford a great deal of protection of the welfare of live animals. The issue is to what extent the UK complies with the Regulation and to what the UK authorities have “gold-plated” it. I cannot spare the time to check this.

      Reply Just not true. If you allow long distance transport of live animals the standards can become very lax over your bord3r, or within your EU borders in parts where enforcement is lax.

  8. fedupsoutherner
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    Indeed. We witnessed some horrendous conditions for animals when living in Spain. They seem to have no compassion where they are concerned not even for domestic animals. All the dogs homes seemed to be run by the British.

    etc ed

  9. agricola
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Animals in the food chain are best slaughtered within an hour of their domicile. I would also institute a rigorous control programme on the production of halal and kosher meat to ensure as far as possible that the animals have a stress free death.

    Labelling is going to be of increasing importance not only in shops but in the public food chain ie. restaurant and school supply for instance. This is not an argument for or against the virtues of halal, sterilised chicken from the USA, lamb from New Zealand, but it is a demand that the consumer knows exactly what he/she is buying in letters equal to the second largest used on the label.

    One service the media could provide weekly is the listing of all wholesale product prices so that shoppers can make price judgements when they enter their supermarket. As the USA is not in the business of harming it’s own citizens by eliminating salmonella in chicken or keeping it’s cattle disease free with antibiotics and hormones , try to make sensible judgements when choosing what to eat. As a producer, there are no doubt sensible ways of doing things that have no effect on the end user. This is where buyers need to be able to monitor what they are buying.

  10. Norman
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    As a retired govt. vet of 40 year’s experience, I ought to respond to this one. The thing I always noticed about EU Directives and Regulations, compared to our own domestic legislation, was that it was of a different spirit. Our own legislation, like our unwritten constitution, were simple, transparent and to the point – and generally interpreted and enforced within the latitude of a decent standard of balance and good will, reflecting our very distinctive and hallowed freedom.
    The EU legislation, however, was noticeably detailed and prescriptive (Napoleonic?), and hence very lengthy: they seemed to be attempting to pronounce on every eventuality over a wide spectrum of national customs. They were administered by high flown EU inspectors, whose dictates our own Civil Servants appeared always to roll over before – enforcing, or gold-plating them to the letter with assiduous zeal! Meanwhile, the standards were s variously interpreted and enforced in other EU Member States, sometime to our own competitive detriment.
    The issue of live animal exports is a special case. With all due respect to our hauliers who do their best to abide by the strict transport rules, we should clearly not be allowing animals to be transported to Italy, Greece or Poland, simply to be slaughtered once they get there. But to prevent such trade went against EU doctrine. This is an affront to anyone who cares for animals – probably most of us, actually – but not the bureaucrats!

    • graham1946
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

      Here you have hit upon a basic difference between the EU and the UK law which is another reason we are incompatible and it is not just about animal care standards. It is how we get what to us are crazy decisions by foreign judges which Remainers are keen to adopt. In simple terms, in the EU nothing is legal unless allowed by law, hence the great detail you describe. Under UK Common Law, everything is allowed unless it is made illegal by law. Common Law = Common sense, until it is mucked about with by politicians.

  11. bigneil
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Why do we need “agricultural output”? – there soon won’t be any farming land left – there are millions of houses to be built to cope with the population of Asia and Africa arriving daily for us to pay for.

  12. alan jutson
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Whilst I agree with higher standards, always remember it comes at a higher cost.

    Thus exporting our products will need a big marketing campaign to support i.

    Unfortunately for the masses both home and abroad, a competitive price is a higher priority for most people, as consumers may well pay a slightly higher price for better welfare, but not huge differences.

    The important aspect to all of this is correct labelling, so people know what is on offer and can make an informed choice.

  13. JoolsB
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    If the UK Government really cares about animal welfare why after banning veal production in this country do we still allow the import of it from the EU. Why are live exports of animals for slaughter still allowed? And why is it taking so long to ban battery hen farming? Also, I find it appalling that products such as faux grois based on absolute cruelty are allowed into the country.

    Going one step further, we hear constantly of sickos starving their animals to death or beating them to a pulp and coming away with a short ban on keeping animals. Not only is it unenforceable but it’s an insult to both animals and animal lovers alike and is no deterrent to stop them doing it again to some other poor animal. Prison sentences should be mandatory for some of the cruelty cases we see involving animals.

    The Government talks tough but doesn’t act it.

  14. John Finn
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Hmm. I’m sure animal welfare in the EU is an issue that interests a lot of people but is it just me or is it an odd topic on which to focus on the morning that the ONS produces its first estimate of Q2 GDP growth – particularly given the recent downward revisions to UK growth for 2017 by the IMF. The other concern is that we appear to be bucking the EU and global growth trends. At this moment in time I suspect the UK government would give their right arm to achieve the IMF’s 1.7% this year. I think 1.5% is the best we can hope for.

    I respect John Redwood enormously. I doubt there are many in the HcC who have John’s grasp of issues. His experience and intellect are second to none. However, I do feel there is a tendency to duck difficult issues. I hope I’m wrong because we’re in danger of adopting “a heads in the sand” approach over the coming months if not.

    Reply I have warned about the damage high stamp duties are doing to the housing market, high VED is doing to the car market, and the attempts of the Bank to slow loan growth for larger purchases. The growth rate will speed up Q 3. There is a very positive industrial survey just out.

    • Blatant remoaner
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps the Brexit chickens are coming home to roost?

  15. Leslie Singleton
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    Dear John–I think I just read somewhere that the EU is, by reason of “welfare considerations”, against chickens being chlorinated. The piece read as if it is the welfare of the (already dead?) chickens that they are protecting, which seems to run counter to your piece. It looks like Gove has gone off at half cock again.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      Postscript–I have personally yet to see any comment on the highly important question of how dilute the “Chlorine” is. It is not as dangerous as implied (Try using Fluorine as I have)–I assume swimming baths are still chlorinated. Bit more information would be good too on the extent to which the chlorine wash eradicates the ghastly salmonella E coli etc. Those reports a few weeks ago about the state of our chicken (Not to wash it for instance??) certainly worried me more than the no doubt very dilute chlorine solution. Cannot believe Gove opened his gob just like that to contradict Fox.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

        PPS–And while on the Halogens, note that lower down in the Group we have Iodine, which is positively beneficent, such that it is, or at least was, painted on wounds. Iodine BTW is a lovely word, deriving from the Greek for the colour violet

      • Bob
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

        Since we drink chlorinated water, then why would it be a problem to wash food with it? 😕

        • Leslie Singleton
          Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

          Dear Bob–Exactly–Alarmist nonsense–Unless we here something on the exact (obviously) dilute concentrations there is no story. The more I think about Gove the more he disgusts me. When is Nigel Farage going to be made Prime Minister? And three cheers for Trump on keeping transsexuals out of his Military–I remember the grief and expense caused by women needing separate facilities to play football.

    • graham1946
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

      I would hazard a guess that the US government doesn’t actively want to poison its population or that of countries it wants to export to. The main problem as I see it is that the EU don’t like it for some reason of their own – probably to protect the lamentable hygiene standards of their own producers. It was reported only recently (by Which? I believe) that our own chickens are very contaminated even to the extent of the outside packaging. We are recommended in the UK not to wash chickens out as we used to in order not to spread bacteria around the meat and to cook very thoroughly (always a sound idea). So I don’t see any problem with chickens being de-contaminated before we get them.

  16. Bert Young
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    When I was 5 years of age I became a member of the RSPCA . I have always been an animal lover and I abhor any form of cruelty that individuals – or society , exposes them to .

  17. Lifelogic
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    There is a certain sort of person usually totally unscientific who “believes” in things and religions (like greencrap & the EU) many of them work for the BBC. They tend also to be the sort of lefties who just love climate alarmism, saving the World, the appalling NHS, “renewables” (or “clean” energy as they like to misleadingly call it), they are against fracking and GM and want more “equality” and higher taxes.

    Though not always for themselves as we see with the Prince Charles types.

    These people usually like to always sound nice (like pop stars and actors) so they like higher animal welfare too. I do too within reason. My approach is to eat rather less meat but better quality outdoor reared or wild game, seafood and fish.

  18. Beecee
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:17 am | Permalink

    Now Mr Gove has waded into the Chicken chlorinated water.

    This is a non story pushed to scare people about post-Brexit.

    Dr Fox stamped on it but now it is all over the air and internet waves because of Mr Gove. What a plonker!

    Do our Ministers etc not know how to keep their big gobs shut? Or is any publicity good for them regardless?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      Indeed Gove, after the knifing Boris and thus lumbering us with lefty May, then going on to propose VAT on private school fees (like Corbyn) seems to going totally round the bend. I thought he was fairly sound at one point.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

      Once again Michael Gove attempts to publicly commit the whole Cabinet to his own view even if the issue has not yet been fully discussed in Cabinet.

  19. LenD
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    Brexiteers need not worry..there is no way that we can remain in the EU system. A50 has been activated so that means we are leaving in march 2019. Despite what some are putting about there will be no transitional period either as the EU needs to have all talks conducted and finished by that time because the EU parliamentary elections are to take place in May 2019 and as verhofstad leader of the EU parliament has already said it would be inconceivable that the UK could still be in the EU in any shape or form after that date..so there you have it and I might add the EU parliament has the very final say in any agreement that might be brought about by that date. So rest assured we will be completely free after that date onwards to trade freely with WTO countries but subject to WTO rules..but we will still be able to make any rules we like to better protect our own native stock..so nothing to be concerned about.

  20. Nig l
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    The cliche is that every French politician is related to a farmer, hence the common ag policy and the other standards albeit I still maintain that meat, eggs and vegetables I buy in the supermarche have more taste than in the uk. My concern is that like health and safety, hygiene etc, we always unnecessarily boiler plate our requirements, enforced by a legion of non productive jobsworths rather than the lip service paid abroad, more interested in supporting local communities.

  21. Epikouros
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    What people do in their own country is rightfully their business and nobody else. As is what I do is nobody’s business but mine unless I do harm to person or property. That we frequently forget. However there is a case that they are not at liberty to take what they do outside their borders to other countries and must abide by the standards, values, rules and laws of that nation. So you are right to condemn the EU for imposing lower standards on members who prefer higher ones.

    Our world is awash with similar dichotomies. Everybody insisting that their opinions, views, cultures are sacrosanct then rush out to impose them on everyone else. We do import new ideas and customs which is good if it is by consent. When it is done by force or even just by stealth then it is pernicious. Certainly destabilising and at worst can lead to serious conflict. That is why we should not treat as lightly that we do our sovereignty, the rule of law, the maintenance of our standards and values and the preservation of our culture and traditions.

  22. ian wragg
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    When we leave the EU we will be free to set our own standards, which will be higher than EU minimum requirements. This makes animal welfare an odd argument for people to use who want us to stay in the EU system.

    If May and Hammond have their way we will never leave the EU. I think it will be up to Corbyn to get us out of the Customs Union and Single Market.

  23. Remington Norman
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Animal Welfare. This debate has been muddied by the failure to distinguish issues which affect the welfare of animals per se and those which concern impact of animal treatment on those consuming animal products. Trucking animals over long distances may be detrimental to their well-being but has no obvious impact on the quality or healthiness of their meat. Conversely, hormones may not harm animals but may affect their meat products.

  24. Bryan Harris
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 12:09 pm | Permalink


    It’s not only in animal welfare where the EU imposes lower standards than the UK – we have had to lower ours accordingly, which means they are quite often aligned with the likes of an ex-soviet satellite.

    Catering is another area where our standards went down because of EU ‘lowest common denominator’ legislation – and just look at what happened with cladding for high rise apartments – builders were alllowed to use the EU standard at a cost of how many lives? Yet we were unable to enforce our better standards – then who gets the blame? Certainly not the pathetic EU!

    Time the media cottoned on to all of this.

    • rose
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Also we should be suing the EU for its pollution of our country, not the other way around. They compelled us to accept giant lorries which had been outlawed here; they greatly increased the population of people and therefore vehicles; they compelled us to go over to diesel at the behest of German diesel engine manufacturers.

  25. Lifelogic
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    Another highly damaging decision by the supreme court on tribunal costs. It will damage the economy and productivity yet again. But will of course create load more parasitic jobs for lawyers.

    To get justice you have to a fair balance of risk reward and costs in the court system. Anyway parliament, very sensibly, passed a clear law showing they wanted these fees to discourage weak and vexatious claims.

    We seem to be ruled to a large degree by a court system acting more in the interest of the lawyers than the public. Courts that seem to think judges should write the law and not elected politicians.

    Lady Hale apparently seemed to think the fees discriminated against women in some oblique way when, as far as I can see, they do no such thing at all.

    Needless to say it is clear what side the BBC will take.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

      Charlie Mullins (of Pimlico Plumbers) on World at One just now was quite right in his comments on this. Even suggesting this ruling alone could cause a recession, as people will be more reluctant to take people on and spend more time fighting tribunal claim rather than doing useful work.

      He was right on what he called Corbyn too, not that Theresa May is much better with her daft socialist, tax ’till the pips squeak, punishment manifesto, workers on company boards & gender pay reporting drivel agenda.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      If our senior judges just blatantly ignore the laws passed by parliament (and effectively rewrite them) then in what way do we live in a democracy? Even outside the EU if we do finally excape?

  26. Mark B
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    And we won’t have to suffer EU regulation that allows horse meat into the food supply.

    • Nig l
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

      What is wrong with horse meat it is very tasty?

      • Anonymous
        Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

        I have neigh problem with it.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

      Dear Mark–What is the position on frogs’ legs and snails, washed in Chlorine or otherwise? In case of doubt, the Frogs like to eat snails because they don’t like fast food.

    • Mark B
      Posted July 26, 2017 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

      To the above.

      If you wish to eat it, fine ! I just like to be given the choice and not have my food adulterated without knowing.

  27. Terry
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    Odd they are but in Brussels there’s none so queer as EU folk.

  28. Norman
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    Two further observations, if I may.
    1. Chlorination levels probably reflect more on the ‘sacrosanct philosophical principles’ of the EU Food safety regime, which would regard contamination with Salmonella and Campylobacter etc in the live bird as being preventable. The alternative, more pragmatic approach would be that its unrealistic to achieve this, so you assume they are contaminated, even if they are not, and add hypochlirite to the washing process. I would have no problem with the latter option. Many people’s kitchen hygiene, when handling raw poultry meat without the use of hypochlorite on work surfaces probably leads to more cases of food poisoning than anything else! The chlorine evaporates as a gas, so is unlikely to harm anyone – unless they are worried about the ozone layer, which is another matter..
    2. Note the BBC’s latest subtle ‘lefty ‘attack on a vulnerable minority – our beleaguered cattle farmers. Articles featuring emission of ‘green-house gases from ruminants; milk being produced at the expense of the calves; a farmer on Country File who gives up all his beef cows to an animal sanctuary, rather than send them to slaughter. I note the same subtle distortions and play on emotions in worse case scenarios, as have been used to get their way on other emotive issues. Make no mistake – this has nothing to do with animal welfare, but more to do with establishing a totalitarian New World Order.

  29. jonP
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    We’ll be finished with EU standards after March 2019 and will then have only our own UK and WTO standards to maintain except when we need to export food stuff and live animals including other goods and services into the EU- then we will have to revert to whatever EU standards pertain. So as we go into the future I’m certain that we will forever have to be mindful of EU standards for everything we do if we intend to continue trading with them-

    If instead we decide to trade only with other countries outside of the EU then we will have to make sure that we live up to WTO standards. Either way there are rules that we will have to be mindful of. The EU will require us to live up to both WTO and EU rules,
    but its the same with the americans they will require us to live up to WTO rules and their own USA rules. There’s no escaping rules

  30. Anonymous
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    Bull fighting

    Fois gras

    Frog’s legs

  31. rose
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    I am glad you have raised this.

    There are so many examplesof continental shortcomings in animal welfare that I can’t go into them all but here is one:

    https://www.ciwf.org.uk/our-campaigns/investigations/transport-investigations/eu-veal-exports/

  32. Chewy
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    Very good point by John. Like Norman I too am a vet who’s spent over 20 years in practice; small animals only, so my current knowledge of the farm sector is dated. But I remember issues like crating of sows, banned in this country but allowed by the EU giving producers such as the Danes the ability to produce cheaper pork based products.
    We are a nation of animal lovers, certainly compared to most of our continental neighbours.
    And yes I know there are always scumbags who mistreat and inflict vile levels of cruelty on animals; but my argument has always been that look at the level of outrage such incidents create throughout general society.
    Our strategy has and must be to promote our meat products on their quality and welfare issues. The US is a nation which by and large considers animal welfare more so than many European countries, so if we can secure a trade deal I believe our meat products can prove highly successful in the US market without compromising standards.
    Chlorinating chickens clearly isn’t a welfare issue as has already been pointed out, the chicken is already dead. Even the EU doesn’t seem to think this is a health issue, just that disinfecting meat this way could mask bad practices. Surely the answer is labelling products correctly so that they can make an informed choice and hopefully elect to buy the superior British product. While I’m on this theme, a really simple and good idea, why not a government led 1980s style Buy British campaign?

  33. bill gau
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

    The EU does not enforce its own regulations on animal welfare. Live export is an absolute disgrace. Pigs from Netherlands to Italy, horses from France to Italy, cattle to Turkey. The Irish ship their cattle to Libya and their calves to Turkey. Eyes on Animals, Animals Angels, CIWF, Animals International do great work in highlighting this horror and the appalling end these animals endure particularly in the Middle East.
    The stupidity is limitless.

  34. Scalelectic I had
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

    The Tory Party was prepared to lose an Election on allowing fox hunting. The issue is hardly a matter for Heads of State to discuss at a world forum is it? Now it plans to disrupt literally every street in the land in order to facilitate the recharging of electric cars. So long as a recharge takes as long as filling your tank with diesel..no???? The Tory Party don’t want electing into the next government. Their prayer will be answered.

  35. Ken Moore
    Posted July 26, 2017 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    Here we go again. The usual clueless suspects that have no practical knowledge or common sense. The people who are wrecking this country. They ….

    – Believe one can change sex on a whim.
    -Are a bit confused by ‘deficit’ and ‘debt’
    -Believe ‘austerity’ means shovelling money into virtue signalling projects while denying funding to essential services
    – Believe real value adding jobs such as steel making can be replaced by coffee sellers and car washers.
    -Don’t know the difference between ‘cladding’ and 6 inches of flammable foam ‘insulation’
    – Don’t know that the Grenfell tower legally complied with a basic EU standard ‘material test’ but not the tougher British standard system test
    – Haven’t a clue about the complexities of the Brexit process and believe a bespoke trade deal can be agreed in 2 years..
    – The number of people that died as a result of car pollution in 2016 is 109. Not 110 or 107 it really is that accurate…..

    Now these same people believe that the laws of physics can be stretched to allow petrol and diesel cars to be phased out in 20 years. The envelope can be stretched but even clever clogs Mr Gove cannot change it’s shape. Which battery powered car will make the best caravan tow car Mr Gove ?. How many charging points will Torquay need in the holiday season ?. Will going all electric only result in 39 or 67 or 22 deaths a year from air pollution. If one is too many why don’t we all walk around and live in homes made from cow dung.
    Is there anyone sane left in Westminster..Dr Redwood what the bleep bleep is going on!!!
    Mind how you go the lunatics are in charge!

  36. A.Sedgwick
    Posted July 27, 2017 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    As a vegetarian I have though consumed dairy products with misgiving but with the publicity this week reminding me of the milking process I have resolved to eliminate them. My “beef” is not with hunters, shooters or fishers but humans forcing an inhumane existence on defenceless animals. It is noteworthy how little emphasis is given in all the global warming/climate change crusade on the affect of meat production for slaughter.
    So my answer to your piece is don’t eat animals.

    Similarly how misleading and stupidly unrealistic is this nonsense of phasing out the ICE by 2040, next it will be a decree that we have to have a human colony on Mars by that date.

    • Human
      Posted July 27, 2017 at 11:36 am | Permalink

      A. Sedgwick
      One of the “beefs” I have with the British Government is that it has afforded no advice whatsoever in deterring people from vegetarianism. Of course you have a point about milk. Cows consume vast…huge amounts of animal protein in the form of grubs, spiders and insects on the grass they graze. There are in fact no vegetarian animals on Earth except ill advised humans, a dying breed.

    • Anonymous
      Posted July 27, 2017 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

      “So my answer to your piece is don’t eat animals.”

      But if they aren’t meant to be eaten then why do they taste of meat ?

    • Prigger
      Posted July 29, 2017 at 12:05 am | Permalink

      I tried eating snake since it was on the menu in a restaurant in Arizona . It was extremely tough and tasted like smoked haddock. I don’t eat pieces of snake any more. I nearly went into a pub/restaurant called Hooters. But I decided I wouldn’t find out what they taste like and came home to Albion and had chips, fried egg and a cup of tea instead.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.

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