Red tape lifting for pig abattoirs

Pig abattoirs will be freed from a large chunk of paperwork next April, when a new Bpex electronic pig movement system comes into force.

The system, known as eAML2 is currently being trialled in some abattoirs, but will become compulsory from next year. It will require pig producers to fill in an online form detailing the consignment of pigs before delivering them to the abattoir. When the pigs arrive, the abattoir will confirm online the number received, record any that are dead on arrival, and the consignment’s unloading time.

The system will mean that, for the first time, the industry will have a comprehensive herd register, which eAML2 project co-ordinator Dorothea Schiemann of Bpex said would enable better communication and control in the event of disease outbreak.

“The information is automatically uploaded to the central government database and a copy is sent to the Local Authority, so there is no longer a need for abattoirs to post AML2 forms,” she said.

“Producers are also finding it saves them time during Trading Standards audits. What might normally take an hour now only takes 15 minutes. Movement licences can all be seen at once on the producer’s computer screen, so there is no need to faff about with paper licences.”

“It is reasonable to say good provisions have been made for smaller abattoirs and there is plenty of lead-in time,” said Norman Bagley, policy director of the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers (AIMS).

“Launched correctly and done properly this will take a lot of the paperwork out for small abattoirs.”

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