12 June 1998
EU vets delay lifting beef ban
By FWi staff
EUROPEAN UNION veterinary experts have delayed a decision on lifting the export ban on British beef.
A meeting of the EUs Standing Veterinary Committee in Brussels today (Friday) ended with vets undecided over whether to back a Commission proposal to allow exports of beef from animals born after 1 August, 1996.
The veterinary committee will resume its examination of the proposal again next week. But even if they reject the commissions plan there is still a chance that the ban could be lifted by the time the UKs EU presidency ends in a fortnight.
Most officials believe that the committee will shy away from making the hard decision and pass it to the farm council, where a similar majority verdict will be required.
The final decision will then be taken by EU agriculture ministers, possibly at a meeting in Luxembourg on June 22.