02 April 1998
SRM ban could be delayed another two years

A EUROPEAN ban on potentially infectious cattle parts (specified risk material or SRM) might not happen next January if the European Commission comes up with a new proposal based on the latest scientific evidence.

The Commission is wondering how it can meet member country demands that it change the proposed law banning potentially infectious cattle parts to their satisfaction.

It has nine months to work out a solution following Tuesdays last-ditch deal for a postponement from 1 April to next January.

The Commission would prefer to withdraw the ban altogether so it can consult Parliament and member states for a new proposal based on the latest scientific evidence. This would mean a ban next January would be unlikely because an agreement between European Union countries and parliament will take up to two years to negotiate.

TheFinancial Times says the delay will worry consumers about the safety of eating meat, especially beef, if slaughter houses are not required to remove SRMs from cattle, sheep and goats, including brains and spinal columns, which the Commission wants banned.

  • EU ban on livestock parts delayed to January, FWi, yesterday (1 April) – Click here
  • Financial Times 02/04/98 page 7