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Lead-Contaminated Feed

Volume 164: debated on Monday 18 December 1989

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To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he proposes to assist livestock producers whose cattle have been cleared following tests for lead-contaminated feed but are unable to obtain slaughtering facilities for their fat cattle; and if he will make a statement.

In all our discussions with the industry on this incident, we have repeatedly assured all concerned that meat derived from animals cleared for slaughter conforms to the rigorous standards laid down by the Department of Health and is perfectly fit for human consumption.We are urgently carrying out scientific work to see whether the restrictions currently attaching to the slaughter of such animals can be eased without risk to public health. I shall ease the restrictions just as soon as it is shown to be safe to do so.