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Cautious backing for proposals to reduce red tape in farming

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THE BVA has expressed its support for Defra's recently published response to the report of the Farming Regulation Task Force while nevertheless warning that the Government should be cautious in its approach to deregulation.

The Association says it supports the principle of ‘earned recognition’ and the use of third-party assurance schemes where these are able to address animal health and welfare and food safety issues and are robustly audited. However, it believes that, in many cases, the burden of regulation is outweighed by its benefits, particularly in the case of disease control.

The task force was set up in 2010 to investigate ways of reducing red tape for farmers and food processors. It published its report in May 2011, making more than 200 recommendations aimed at reducing the bureaucratic burden (VR, May 21, 2011, vol 168, p 522). In November last year, Defra published an initial response to the report outlining how it was responding to the challenges set out by the task force (VR, November 12, 2011, vol 169, p 510). It published its full response on February 21.

In the response, Defra accepts 159 of the 220 …

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