14 January 2000

Denmark now absolved from pig criticism

PIG industry protesters targeting imports of "sub-standard" pigmeat do not put Danish imports in the same category as those from other EU countries, according to a leading spokesman for British pig industry activists.

Dutch, French and Belgian imports are of much greater concern, said Digby Scott. He was responding to an open letter to British pig producers, which appears in this weeks FW from Danske Slagterier, the Danish pig industry body, calling for "a more constructive dialogue in the months ahead".

The letter says Danish pig farmers are "deeply concerned" that the British industry may continue a war of words against them. It highlights Danish standards of health and welfare and recent industry initiatives, including salmonella controls and a ban on antibiotic growth promoters.

Mr Scott said the British industry generally acknowledges the effort made by the Danes to match UK standards, although there have been times when increasingly desperate protesters have criticised the lower welfare standards of some Danish pigs.