12 July 2000
High-welfare veal exports start

THE first batch of calves reared in welfare-friendly veal calf units in Britain have been slaughtered for export to the Continent, reports The Times.

Over 200 calves have been reared on a milk-only diet in the last six months, and the first exports will reach the continent this week, says the paper.

Trials of the process have taken place on two farms in East Sussex and Carmarthen, Mid-Wales. Buyers from Belgium and Italy are assessing the meat.

The intention is to export meat from 500,000 calves a year, reviving the market for veal exports and ending the slaughter of unwanted bull calves.

In the new systems, run by Anglo-Dutch Meats and Serval of France, calves are loosely housed in groups of 30 with natural light and plenty of space.

Animal welfare groups have given cautious approval to the new initiative.