Clean sheep avoid price penalties

Eblex is reminding farmers that they should ensure sheep presented for slaughter are clean to help avoid additional price penalties.

As the seasons start to change, producers are reminded they should ensure sheep presented for slaughter are clean to help avoid additional price penalties.

Dirty livestock presented at a market or direct to an abattoir will have to be cleaned up by the processor who will then pass back the charge to the farmers.

Phil Hadley, EBLEX regional development manager, said: "The need to present clean cattle and sheep at this time of year makes sound commercial sense.

"Not only is it a food safety issue to present dirty stock for slaughter, but if excessive shearing is necessary on sheep it could damage the value of the hide and further reduce returns back to the producer.

"Also, given the current disease situation, when taking stock to slaughter or market ensure your vehicles are thoroughly cleaned for biosecurity reasons."

The Food Standards Agency has produced guides for beef and sheep producers on presenting clean livestock for slaughter, available online at http://www.food.gov.uk/foodindustry/farmingfood/cleancattleandmeatsafety/

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