By James Garner

FARMERS WEEKLY readers can claim an important victory.

We have had a phenomenal response to our joint campaign with the Livestock Auctioneers Association to get livestock markets reopened.


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We received 1500 letters addressed to Lord Whitty, and the first 1388 were delivered to the minister at Defra headquarters in London on Tuesday (18 December).

And Lord Whitty announced this week that livestock markets for slaughter cattle, sheep and pigs will reopen in mid-February, 2002.

Store cattle will also be sold through markets under strict biosecurity measures.

But the controversial 21-day standstill will remain.

Peter Kingwill, chairman of the LAA, said: “It is a step in the right direction.

“The industry still has concerns over the 21-day rule being in place, but we recognise this is an interim measure and feel we can work with it at the moment.”

If you havent signed our letter and returned it yet – or added your name to the petition via FWi – then it is not too late to show the government just how important livestock markets are to your farm business.

Remember, this campaign is not just about having markets open again, but also about the conditions that they will have to adapt to reopen.

So keep sending in your names. It is vital that we Save Our Markets and have the impractical 21-day standstill lifted.

  • Save our Markets – click here to sign up