BPEX Pig Health Scheme to stay for at least another year

The BPEX Pig Health Scheme (BPHS) is to remain in place for at least the next 12 months, until transition to a single and effective inspection system which meets the needs of all key stakeholders has been achieved.

Previously due to end in Spring 2015, the scheme’s extension was announced by BPEX Health information and Food Safety Coordinator, Emma Bailey-Beech, who said the review of carcase data reporting is “ongoing” and that work is progressing towards transition to an alternative system.

She explained that there are currently two carcase data collection methods in operation, BPHS, which is run by BPEX, and the Collection and Communication of Inspection Results Scheme (CCIR), which is provided by the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

“The plan is to incorporate key elements of the current BPHS, into a single, cost-effective CCIR system which provides high quality post mortem data feedback to all producers,” she said.

As part of the transition process, however, a recent survey of users was carried out, revealing major differences in awareness between the two programmes.

“Surprisingly, only 76% of respondents were aware of the data reports available from the FSA through CCIR, whilst 100% were aware of the BPHS scheme,” said Ms Bailey-Beech, adding that, in addition, only 25% of respondents who received CCIR said that they always, or often, discussed data with vets on routine farm visits, compared to the 76% who discuss BPHS results.

“The survey feedback has presented us with some specific work areas to address, particularly the perception of accuracy,” she said. “Over the coming months, we will continue to work closely with the FSA, taking on board these comments in order to make the CCIR scheme as efficient as possible, as quickly as possible, for those involved.”

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