6 September 2000
Pig industry in new appeal to Brown

By FWi staff

PIG industry leaders were due to meet farm minister Nick Brown on Wednesday (06 Sep) afternoon in a bid to extract more government money to help farmers hit by swine fever controls.

Representatives from the National Pig Association, the National Farmers Union and the Meat and Livestock Commission will tell the minister the situation in East Anglia has deteriorated this week.

Since he announced last week that only 35 a pig will be awarded to farmers who enter pigs into a MAFF slaughter scheme, two new cases have been confirmed on farms in Norfolk and Suffolk.

This means more restrictions have been imposed and some farmers who were expecting to be able to move their pigs off farm next week could be waiting for another month.

The scheme, which has only taken one batch of pigs so far, is designed to alleviate welfare problem that built up on farms because of the movement restrictions that have affected around 700 farms.

NPA chief executive Mike Sheldon said the delegation will argue that farmers should be paid nearer full market value for entering pigs into the scheme.

He would not be drawn on what the delegation would ask for.

Last week, however, the NPA was asking for 100 to reflect market value and the costs of keeping the pigs on farm.

A MAFF spokeswoman said she was not aware that the minister intended to announce the provision of more money for pig farmers today.