The National Pig Association (NPA) has urged Defra to “get a move on” concerning the writing of new animal welfare codes, following the Government’s unexpected “volte-face” on the issue.
“We don’t care whether it’s us or Defra who update the current Code of Recommendations for the Welfare of Pigs, as long as it gets done, and as long as we are involved,” said NPA chief executive, Dr Zoe Davies.
“The current edition was written 13 years ago. It’s our industry manual and it’s now seriously out of date, and that means we are missing an important opportunity to remind producers of the latest pig welfare legislation and to provide guidance on science-led best practice in pig husbandry.”
NPA also said that it understood that representations by vegetarian and vegan activists played no part in Defra’s U-turn yesterday, rather that Defra realised the welfare codes should be the joint responsibility of Government and industry.
“The codes are designed to be a farmer-friendly way of providing up-to-date statutory information in tandem with useful advice,” said Dr Davies (pictured above).
“We are ready to play our part in helping Defra update the current code. Indeed we insist on having an input. We’ll be pressing them vigorously to get a move on, otherwise we may have to produce our own interim code, because we’re not prepared to wait another 13 years for our pig industry welfare manual to be updated.”