Vets urge government to abandon beak tip ban
Vets urge government to abandon beak tip ban
Eight active vets who are all members of the British Veterinary Poultry Association (BVPA) - including the association's president, Keith Warner - are writing to the Environment Secretary individually to tell him that going ahead with the ban at this time would be bad for animal welfare. They want the ban put off until it can be shown that commercial laying flocks can be managed without the risk of injurious pecking.
The ban was originally due to come into force at the beginning of 2011 but was put off on the advice of the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) because of the council's concerns about feather pecking and cannibalism, although the Government did insist that the industry use only infrared beak trimming in future. Keith Warner told the Ranger that infrared beak trimming was a big improvement over hot blade treatment and there was no suggestion that it caused a bird long term pain. He said that its impact on bird welfare was certainly less than the potential impact of injurious pecking, which is recognised as the biggest risk amongst commercial layers whose beaks are left intact.
The unit in East Anglia is one of three that has been underwritten by the British Egg Industry Council (BEIC) to encourage larger units to volunteer for the trials. BEIC chief executive Mark Williams revealed at an egg producers' meeting near York in January that the outbreak had cost tens of thousands of pounds in compensation. He said it would be "a welfare disaster" for the egg industry if the ban went ahead in 2016.
Keith Warner, who is with Minster Vets, said that the eight vets writing to the Environment Secretary were members of a committee of the BVPA that organised meetings and discussed issues affecting the industry. Beak trimming was something that was the subject of debate at the moment and the eight vets had decided that they would write to Owen Paterson individually to give their own views.
"Everyone will write their own letters, so they will make their own points. In my letter I have said that the welfare impact of infrared beak trimming is less than injurious pecking. If a ban is implemented in 2016 it will worsen welfare."
At a meeting of the Yorkshire Egg Producers' Discussion Group near York in January Mark Williams said that the egg industry had always had reservations about the beak trimming trials being carried out by the University of Bristol. "We said all along that Defra would not pay Bristol enough money to have control flocks. If you do a scientific project you have a trial flock and you have a control flock and you repeat it over a number of flocks. We have been highly critical of all this."
He said no compensation was being provided by Defra for producers who volunteered to take part in the trial and who suffered losses. "That's why we eventually agreed to step in and financially underwrite three 16,000 free range flocks. We insisted that producers who took part had matched controls. Unfortunately one has had a disaster and it has cost us a fortune," he said. "If the producer was carrying that it would be the end of it, bankruptcy. But we have to do it. We have to show that we are serious about welfare and that we are prepared to go through the science and the trials. But we do not believe it should come in until such time as a bird can be bred that doesn't need beak trimming without it resorting to injurious pecking and cannibalism."
Mark said another problem that could arise if the ban went ahead in 2016 was the possibility that beak trimming could be banned in England but not in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. "They would get a de facto ban anyway because all the pullet hatcheries are in England." But he said, "What's to stop a producer going to France, where they still allow hot blading, and buying their day-old chicks from there." He said the current Government had said it wanted to grow the rural economy and exports but the possibility of producers buying chicks from elsewhere could have a big impact on British hatcheries. "It's madness to shoot your own industry in the foot," he said.
All industry bodies with an interest in the beak trimming ban, including the BEIC, the British Free Range Egg Producers' Association and the NFU, have been lobbying politicians to prevent the ban going ahead in 2016. Mark Williams said at the York meeting that a General Election would take place in 2015 - the year before it was due to come into force. The result of that election could determine whether or not the ban was introduced.
No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment
Please enter your name
Please enter your comment
Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.
Some error on your process.Please try one more time.
De Lacy Executive is seeking a Customer Specialist to help the growth and development of the Internal Sales department within...
We are looking for an additional team member for our 200 cow pedigree high input housed herd.
We are looking for someone ...
Harvest tractor work including grain cart, cultivations, and some potato harvest work on a progressive 1600 acre family farm ...
De Lacy Executive is currently recruiting for a Nutritionist to enhance my clients team of expertise within their monogastric...
Permanent job (initial six months trial period) working on an organic livestock farm in Leicestershire. Must be self mo...
Farming UK | Farms and Land
Barbers Rural (13)
Barlow Associates (2)
Batcheller Monkhouse - Haywards Heath (1)
Berrys - Kettering (1)
Bidwells - Perth (1)
Brown & Co - Bury (3)
Brown & Co - King's Lynn (1)
Brown & Co - Norwich (2)
Bruton Knowles (2)
BTF Partnership LLP (1)
Carter Jonas - Cambridge (1)
Carter Jonas - Harrogate (2)
Carter Jonas - North Wales (1)
Carter Jonas - Winchester (1)
Carter Jonas - York (1)
Charnock Bates (1)
Cheffins - Ely (1)
Churchill Country & Equestrian Estate Agents (2)
CKD Galbraith - Ayr (1)
CKD Galbraith - Castle Douglas (3)
CKD Galbraith - Edinburgh (2)
CKD Galbraith - Galashiels (1)
CKD Galbraith - Kelso (1)
CKD Galbraith - Perth (1)
CKD Galbraith - Stirling (10)
Cooper & Tanner LLP (1)
Corum Property (1)
Cruso & Wilkin (1)
Cundalls - Malton (1)
Cundalls - Pickering (2)
David James and Partners - Old Sodbury (1)
David Parry & Co (2)
Dee Atkinson & Harrison - Beverley (1)
Dee Atkinson & Harrison - Driffield (1)
Donald Ross (3)
Edward H Perkins (1)
Edwin Thompson - Berwick upon Tweed (1)
Edwin Thompson - Galashiels (1)
Elstons, Country Land & Estate Agents (2)
enfields - Pontefract (1)
Express Estate Agency (1)
Fine & Country Homes from Mortimers (2)
Fisher German - Ashby de La Zouch (8)
Fisher German - Banbury (1)
Fisher German - Knutsford (1)
Fisher German - Retford (1)
Fisher German - Stafford (2)
Fisher German - Thame (1)
Fisher German Denton Clark - Chester (1)
Fisher German John Sanders - Bromsgrove (1)
Fisher German John Sanders - Worcester (1)
Foster Maddison - Hexham (1)
Foster Maddison - Lanchester (1)
Fox Bennett (1)
Fox Grant - Salisbury (9)
Fox Grant - Sherborne (3)
Fox Grant - Taunton (4)
G. Herbert Banks (2)
Gary Hoerty Associates (1)
George F White - Alnwick (1)
George F White - Wolsingham (1)
Grange Solicitors and Estate Agents (1)
Greenslade Taylor Hunt - Bridgwater (1)
Greenslade Taylor Hunt - Burnham-On-Sea (1)
Greenslade Taylor Hunt - Taunton (1)
Greenslade Taylor Hunt - Tiverton (1)
H&H Land and Property - Carlisle (2)
Hamnett Hayward - Aylesbury Vale and Chilterns (1)
Hamnett Hayward - Thame (1)
Hamptons International - Banbury (1)
Hamptons International - Bath (1)
Hamptons International - Broadway (1)
Hamptons International - Buckingham (1)
Hamptons International - Caterham (1)
Hamptons International - Cirencester (1)
Hamptons International - Deddington (1)
Hamptons International - Epsom (1)
Herbert R Thomas - Cowbridge (1)
Herbert R Thomas - Neath (1)
Hinson Parry & Co - Newcastle-under-Lyme (1)
Hopkinsons Estate Agents (1)
Humberts - Chippenham (1)
Humberts - Marlborough (1)
Humberts - Taunton (1)
J.J. Morris - Cardigan (1)
Lambert and Foster - Cranbrook (1)
Leonards - Hull (1)
Mansell McTaggart - Crowborough (1)
Mansell McTaggart - Forest Row (2)
Mansell McTaggart - Hassocks (1)
Maxey Grounds & Co - Wisbech (1)
McCartneys - Brecon (1)
McCartneys - Craven Arms (1)
McCartneys - Hay-On-Wye (1)
Michael C L Hodgson - Grange-over-Sands (1)
Michael C L Hodgson - Kendal (1)
Michael Graham - Aylesbury (1)
Michael Graham - Buckingham (1)
Michael Graham - Northampton (1)
Michael Graham - Princes Risborough (2)
Morris Marshall & Poole - Newtown (1)
Morris Marshall & Poole - Shrewsbury (1)
Pelhams Equestrian Rural & Land Agents (1)
Perkins George Mawer & Co (1)
Pike Smith and Kemp Rural - Maidenhead (1)
Pike Smith and Kemp Rural - Marlow (1)
Robert Bell and Company - Lincoln (2)
Robert Bell and Company - Woodhall Spa (1)
Rural and Equestrian Ltd (2)
Rural Scene (1)
Savills - Cambridge (1)
Savills - Edinburgh (1)
Savills - Exeter (2)
Savills - Jersey (1)
Savills - London Head Office (2)
Savills - Norwich (1)
Savills - Nottingham (1)
Savills - Telford (1)
Savills - York (1)
Seddons - Bampton (1)
Seddons - Honiton (1)
Seddons - Tiverton (1)
Smiths Gore - Dumfries (2)
Smiths Gore - Edinburgh (1)
Smiths Gore - Oxford (1)
Smiths Gore - Taunton (2)
Smiths Gore - York (2)
Smiths Surveyors (1)
Stewart & Watson - Huntly (1)
Strutt & Parker - Banchory (1)
Strutt & Parker - Canterbury (1)
Strutt & Parker - Chelmsford (2)
Strutt & Parker - Chester (1)
Strutt & Parker - Edinburgh (3)
Strutt & Parker - Exeter (4)
Strutt & Parker - Inverness (2)
Strutt & Parker - Morpeth (1)
Wallets Rural Property Services (13)
Williamson and Henry (1)
Willsons Chartered Surveyors - Alford (1)
Woodlands - Northern England (1)
Wright Manley - Crewe (1)
Wright Marshall - Buxton (1)
Wright Marshall - Chester (1)
Wright Marshall - Crewe (1)
Wright Marshall - Nantwich (2)
Wright Marshall - Northwich (7)
Wright Marshall - Tarporley (2)
Wright Marshall - Whitchurch (1)
Youngs RPS - Hexham (1)
Argyll and Bute (2)
Channel Islands (1)
County Durham (1)
Dumfries & Galloway (17)
East Sussex (4)
East Yorkshire (2)
North Yorkshire (8)
Perth and Kinross (2)
Scottish Borders (6)
South Yorkshire (1)
West Midlands (2)
West Sussex (3)
West Yorkshire (4)
Farming UK Holiday Rentals
Argyll and Bute (1)
County Durham (24)
Dumfries & Galloway (7)
East Lothian (4)
East Sussex (5)
East Yorkshire (9)
Isle of Anglesey (2)
Isle of Wight (3)
North Yorkshire (97)
Outer Hebrides (1)
Perth and Kinross (3)
Scottish Borders (8)
South Yorkshire (1)
Tyne & Wear (1)
West Lothian (8)
West Midlands (1)
West Sussex (4)
West Yorkshire (5)
A strong pound and increased red meat imports coupled with a plentiful dome...
Depression is affecting Wales' farming industry and there is a need to use ...
With just one week to go before the final judging and announcement of the w...
A rural law expert has highlighted the importance of good succession planni...
A south Yorkshire dairy farming family is pulling out all the stops to prom...
Predicting what is going to happen to wheat prices is a challenge, but in s...
A Lancashire based livestock theft prevention scheme is aiming to go nation...
A female farmer has been recognised by the farming and conservation industr...
The new Conservative government appears to be preparing to implement cuts f...