DEFRA slammed over fallen stockSource: FWi 25 February 2004 The Liberal Democrats have accused the government of dragging its feet about the implementation of a national collection scheme for fallen stock.
Officials announced on Tuesday (Feb 24) that the introduction of the scheme has been delayed until autumn 2004.
The decision means that beef and sheep farmers who had been relying on the scheme being operational by now have been left in the lurch. Lib dem shadow DEFRA secretary Andrew George said the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs had been dragging its feet for months on the issue.
"Although I predicted this delay, I would rather have been wrong," he said. "Given that the regulation [banning burial] has been in place since the summer, DEFRA have put farmers in an invidious position by taking so long to get the scheme running."
Mr George said the government should use the opportunity of a pan-European review to force a more common sense approach to the regulation.