Monday, 24 October 2011
"Outrageous" Animal Exports Put to Minister by Thanet MPs and Leader of the Council
Laura Sandys MP for Ramsgate has secured an adjournment debate in Parliament on Monday 24th October to urge the Government to do all they can to stop animal exports from the Port of Ramsgate.
The debate follows a productive meeting that was held with Agriculture Minister, Jim Paice, the Leader of the Council, Bob Bayford, and Roger Gale, North Thanet’s MP. The meeting was called by Laura to convey – in the strongest of terms – Thanet’s residents’ condemnation of the trade.
Laura said: “Animals are sentient beings and deserve to be treated with care and compassion – exporting them on long, cramped journeys is barbaric and totally unnecessary. Live exports are a thing of the past.
“We are working extremely hard to pursue any legal means to prevent the trade from Ramsgate. However, just as the last Labour Government found it was unable to put a stop to the trade due to EU Regulations, so too the Coalition is finding it impossible to unilaterally prevent what, at present, is a legal trade.
“However, the meeting with the Minister did reveal that there are some opportunities to be pursued in partnership with Government which would make exporting livestock more difficult and more importantly significantly more expensive.
“Firstly, a new labelling system that was passed 2 weeks ago will ban producers from labelling the country of origin as the place of slaughter. If an animal is reared in the UK this must be declared – this could make people think twice about purchasing exported meat and kill off the trade. Secondly, the cost of inspections of live export shipments could soon be passed onto the businesses which could damage the trade. Finally, the EU is soon to publish a report into the transportation conditions of animals that will reflect the considerable cost to the environment of transporting livestock. This Commission report should provide an opportunity for the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers to address and further regulate the trade. Every avenue is being pursued. The Minister, Roger Gale MP, the Leader of! the Council, Bob Bayford and I are keen to put an end to live exports for good and are working tirelessly to find a solution.”