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Views sought for Red Tractor's 2021 standards review
The consultation puts forwards proposals on amendments to standards across sectors including beef and lamb, poultry, pigs and dairy.

Consultation on changes to farming standards launched

The UK's largest food standards scheme Red Tractor is seeking input from across the farming industry for a new consultation on ways to advance its farm standards.

The consultation, which opened on Monday (4 January), put forward proposals on amendments to standards across the scheme's six sectors; beef and lamb, poultry, pigs, dairy, fresh produce and combinable crops and sugar beet.

These proposed standards will come into effect in November 2021 and have been developed in collaboration with farming organisations, veterinary professionals, farmers and retailers over the past 12 months.

Red Tractor CEO Jim Moseley said: “These proposals strive to strike a delicate balance which protects and promotes our members, reassures consumers and customers, while acknowledges the implications of the challenges that the industry faces with future trade deals and the agricultural transition plan.”

Examples of these proposed changes include:

  • having animal welfare outcomes linked to standards and providing clear guidelines as to what is and isn't acceptable when handling animals
  • integrating worker welfare into the standards to ensure members are working to protect the safety and wellbeing of farm workers. This will help improve UK agriculture's health and safety record, as farming is currently identified as an at-risk sector for labour exploitation
  • more meaningful and accessible environmental protection standards adapted from Defra's Farming Rules for Water, which aim to reduce soil erosion and nutrient run-off.

In addition to the Standards Consultation, Red Tractor has also launched the What Matters To You Survey. This asks industry workers and representatives for their views on how Red Tractor can better understand their business and work with them more closely.

Further information, including a full list of proposed changes by sector and information on how to respond to the consultation can be found on the Red Tractor review hub.

The consultation and review closes on 5 March 2021.

Become a member or log in to add this story to your CPD history

Born Free video highlights how humans are to blame for COVID-19

News Story 1
 Wildlife charity Born Free has released a video emphasising the importance of changing the ways in which humans treat wildlife in order to prevent pandemics from occurring in the future.

The video, narrated by founder patron Joanna Lumley OBE, says: "To deal with the very immediate threat of another global catastrophe, we have to focus on ending the destruction and conversion of natural habitats and the devastating impact of the wildlife trade.

"The vast majority of these viruses originated in wild animals before infecting us. Destroying and exploiting nature puts us in closer contact with wildlife than ever before."

Born Free has compiled an online resource with information on how to take action and improve protections for wildlife here.

To view the video, please click here.

Images (c) Jan Schmidt-Burbach. 

Click here for more...
News Shorts
RVC opens 2021 Summer Schools applications

The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) has opened applications for its 2021 Summer Schools, with students in Years 10, 11 and 12 invited to apply.

Taking place between July and August 2021, the event gives budding vets from all backgrounds first-hand insight into what it's like to study at the Campus.

Much of this year's content is likely to be delivered virtually, including online lectures and practical demonstrations, but the RVC hopes to welcome each of the participants to campus for at least one day to gain some hands-on experience.

For more information about the Schools and to apply, visit: Applications close on the 2 March 2021.