7 July 1995

Stall &tether recompense is urged by NFU

THE NFU is urging the government to provide compensation for producers who must convert dry sow stall and tether housing.

It cites an NFU/Pig Farming survey (Livestock, May 19) which shows that the unilateral legislation to ban stalls and tethers, being introduced in the UK six years ahead of the rest of Europe, has dented confidence in the industry.

NFU pig committee chairman Richard Campbell also cites the illegal national assistance made available to competing producers in other EU member states.

This was reflected in the latest EU census for April, which shows that the total UK herd of breeding sows is static but the French herd has expanded by 4.5%. The decline in the UK pig herd relative to the French further reflected lack of confidence of UK producers.

He urges the government to maintain pressure on the European Commission to take the French government to the European Court of Justice.

"These actions are vital if many UK pig producers are to be convinced that the government does value their contribution and will fight to stop them being disadvantaged by unilateral legislation and illegal state aids in other member states," he says.