The NFU is continuing to make the case for an extension to the EU derogation on double-tagging of sheep and goats despite comments from DEFRA and other industry stakeholders that the battle has been lost.

NFU director-general, Richard Macdonald, met Paola Testori-Coggi, deputy director of the EU Commission’s food health department DG SANCO, last week to emphasise the significance of the derogation to the industry. Mr Macdonald is due to meet her again today (15 June) to reiterate the industry’s position.

During the initial meeting, Ms Testori-Coggi is understood to have told the NFU director general that she understood the UK situation and believed that it had a legitimate argument for maintaining the derogation at least until the EU decided when to implement electronic identification (EID).

Meanwhile, NFU president, Peter Kendall, and livestock board chairman, Thomas Binns, met junior DEFRA minister, Ben Bradshaw, last week to make the case with government.

“The minister was aware of our concerns and agreed to push for an extension of the derogation,” said Mr Binns.