Euro-SRMplan cold-shoulder from vet body

27 March 1998

Euro-SRMplan cold-shoulder from vet body

ATTEMPTS by the EU Commission to introduce a Community-wide set of rules for taking specified risk materials (SRMs) out of the food chain appear to have failed.

Following outright rejection by EU farm ministers last week, commissioners announced this week they would give the SRM ban one more go – presenting a revised version to the Brussels-based Standing Veterinary Committee today (Fri).

But every expectation is the vets will cold-shoulder it again and the commission will abandon the plan.

In that case, responsibility for keeping SRMs, such as brain, eyes, tonsils and spinal cord, out of the food chain will pass to national governments. Currently only the UK, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium and Portugal operate these controls.

The commission also indicated it would make a fresh attempt to get an EU ban by involving Euro-MPs in the decision-making process. But that would take at least a year to achieve, and would probably encounter even more political problems.

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