16 September 1999
Farmers stifled by red tape – Times
BRITISH farmers are being stifled by “Alice in Wonderland” interpretations of regulations from Brussels, writes columnist Magnus Linklater in The Times.
The government has pledged to defend rural employment, but is finishing off one of the few agricultural businesses which is actually thriving, he writes.
Small abattoirs are being crippled because they cannot cope with the expense of improved hygiene and food safety inspections.
The Ministry of Agriculture claims it has no alternative but to impose the strict health regulations from Brussels on all abattoirs, regardless of size.
But it is ignoring a letter from the European Commission said to include a get-out clause which could prove a life-line for small slaughterhouses, writes Mr Linklater.