•The Eastern Counties MEP, Stuart Agnew, has angrily condemned the European Commission’s abrupt decision to ban Desinewed Meat (DSM) even though there is no evidence that it is dangerous to human health, describing the decision as “wasteful of perfectly good meat” and pointing out that it “should be for the British government to make such decisions, not unelected European Commissioners sitting in Brussels”.
Mr Agnew, who is the UK Independence Party’s spokesman on agriculture, said: “The DSM process made sure that there was a minimum of waste after cattle have been slaughtered. If the animals have been properly cared for and well fed, it is very wasteful not to use quantities of meat left on the bones of the carcass, particularly when demand for food has never been higher. Why should unelected European Commissioners be telling us what we can eat? It should be a matter for the British Government.
“Other issues that should have been taken into account by the Commission before abruptly issuing this thoughtless and arbitrary ban; are the cost of altering labelling and the fact that the food industry hasn’t been given time to adapt to the change. I would also question whether some EU member states will even bother to comply. We could end up with another situation like the battery cage egg ban, where UK meat producers have invested heavily to comply with the DSM ban only to find themselves against unfair competition from EU member states who ignore the ban and carry on producing meat in this way.
“I am also concerned about the disproportionate effect this will have on low income families, who are much more likely to buy meat products that have been made using the DSM technique. When there is increasing poverty and hardship being generated by unemployment and pay cuts, this unnecessary ban is singularly ill-timed.”