UK flags new rules to strengthen meat traceability

By Rory Harrington, 10-Dec-2009

New supply chain regulations designed to beef up the ‘farm to fork’
traceability of cattle, sheep and goats sent to slaughter will come
into force in the UK from the beginning of next year.

operators and livestock keepers will be obliged to provide Food Chain
Information (FCI) for all cattle sheep and goats from 1 January 2010
under new European Union legislation, the Food Standards Agency
said yesterday. The regulation will apply to all those animals sent
either directly to slaughter or sold through livestock markets.

The agency cautioned that once the new rules come into force, meat
from cattle, sheep or goats without FCI information will not be passed
for human consumption, as it urged slaughterhouse operators to prepare
for the changes now.

Food Chain Information

FCI is information about the health of the animals being sent for
slaughter, and other information relevant to the safety of meat derived
from them. It includes data about medicines the animals have been

The rules already been progressively applied across other species; poultry in 2006, pigs 2008 and calves and horses this year.

“The new rules are an important part of ‘farm-to-fork’ food safety
controls and highlight the food safety responsibilities of livestock
keepers in the meat production chain,”
said a FSA statement.
“The information about slaughter animals that is passed from the farm
to the slaughterhouse can be used by operators and Official
Veterinarians (OV) to make decisions about processing and inspection