Defra participates in regular meetings with the European Commission and other member states through the Commission’s Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies (TSE) Working Group, which meets approximately every two months, and through the Commission’s Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health (SCoFCAH), which meets approximately every two weeks. Amendments to the annexes of European Union (EU) TSE Regulations have been discussed frequently, especially prior to the decision to lift the UK export ban and in the context of adjusting the surveillance and eradication programmes for TSEs in sheep.
At council level, chief veterinary officers of EU member states meet monthly and have discussed TSEs. Last year and earlier this year, there were also regular Council Working Group meetings to discuss both the Commission’s TSE Roadmap and a regulation amending the main part of the EU TSE Regulations (Explanatory Memorandum 15874/04). The amending regulation was agreed by the Council on 23 November.