Pig farmers call for pledge on illegal meat
Pig farmers are challenging food manufacturers, retailers and caterers to give a public commitment that they are not selling illegally-produced meat from Europe.
Continental farms are flouting new European Union welfare legislation outlawing the prolonged confinement of sows in individual cages, known as "stalls".
The National Pig Association (NPA) has set up a website Wall-of-Fame-and-Shame which will list companies that have pledged to source imported pork products only from farms that are operating legally. All companies selling imported pork and pork products are being urged by the NPA to check their sources of supply very carefully.
"They must be absolutely certain the bacon, sausages, ham, pizzas and other processed pork they sell do not come from farms that are flouting European animal welfare law," said the NPA's Dr Zoe Davies.
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Most EU countries have failed to comply with the animal welfare directive which from this month bans the prolonged confinement of sows in stalls. Individual sow stalls have been outlawed on British pig units for 14 years. They are so narrow that pigs cannot turn around; all they can do is sit, stand, and lie down.