28 October 1998
NFU tells minister to roll up the red tape

FARM leaders have called on the Government to stop imposing standards and conditions which make British produce uncompetitive.

Ben Gill, president of the National Farmers Union, told junior agriculture minister Elliot Morley that the livelihoods of many producers were threatened by too much red tape.

“We cannot go on like this. There must be an end to unilateral legislation,” said Mr Gill yesterday (Tuesday).

Mr Gill told listeners at the Great North Meet Agricultural Conference in Yorkshire that domestic legislation had already stifled the UK veal industry.

Now bureaucracy was damaging poultry and pig production, Mr Gill added.

Mr Morley said that he was seeking to get common standards agreed across all EU member states. But it would be a mistake to set standards at the level of the lowest common denominator, he added.

The minister was also asked to extend the calf slaughter scheme by a questioner from the floor of the conference.

But Mr Morley would only say careful consideration was being given to the request.

  • The Herald 28/10/98 page 26