Eblex stresses importance of cleanliness

Eblex is urging producers to ensure that livestock being presented for slaughter meets cleanliness guidelines to avoid incurring additional hygiene controls that increase costs and lower returns.

As dirty animals increase the risk of carcase contamination during the dressing process by food poisoning organisms such as E.coli and clostridium, animals presented to slaughter are classified according to the FSA’s Clean Livestock Policy.

Only animals in categories 1 and 2 can be slaughtered without restriction, with livestock in categories 3-5 requiring additional controls such as clipping or reduced kill line speed. This increases the costs for the processor and the additional costs are often passed back to the producer, thereby reducing returns.

Although the incidence of dirty animals remains relatively low, pressures on the supply and cost of straw can exacerbate the problem, particularly during winter.

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