7 September 2001
Handful of abattoirs slaughter lambs

By FWi staff

ONLY a handful of 17 abattoirs licensed by the Intervention Board have started slaughtering light lambs under the governments new disposal scheme.

But the 11 abattoirs in England and three each in Scotland and Wales are expected to be processing 368,000 lambs a week from Monday (10 September).

As well as the three abattoirs in Scotland, 12 collection centres have also been licensed to serve the remote areas in the north and west.

But Jim Walker, president of National Farmers Union Scotland, said no-one had any idea how the situation was working or which abattoirs were involved.

“The board had plenty of warning. Ministers announced back in July that we would have this scheme from September. The performance is pathetic.

The scheme is primarily aimed at light lambs from hill farms that would normally have gone for export, but cannot because of the foot-and-mouth crisis.

All lambs born this year are eligible and all sheep producers should have received a letter from the Intervention Board with details of the scheme.

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