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A NATIONAL FALLEN stock collection scheme will finally start operating on Nov 22.

Farmers will be able to register for the scheme, which has been devised by the National Fallen Stock Company, from that date and collections will start the same day.

Michael Seals, chairman of the NFSC board, said the scheme would give farmers access to a guaranteed, nationwide, biosecure collection service at reasonable prices.

"I know many livestock farmers are anxious for the scheme to start and for details of how the scheme will work," he said.

"We'll be writing to them shortly with information about it and telling them how they can register. I look forward to as many farmers as possible joining the scheme next month."

Mr Seals said a helpline (0845 054 8888) will open from Oct 25 to which farmers should direct any questions about the service.

In broad terms, it will operate on a pay-as-you-go basis once producers have paid their 28 annual subscription.

Farmers will be able to choose their preferred approved collector from a list provided by the NFSC. Collectors will normally be expected to collect carcasses within 48 hours.