EU to relax foot and mouth restrictions on UK meat exports

LONDON (Thomson Financial) - The EU Commission has agreed to relax the current foot and mouth disease (FMD) export restrictions on UK meat and meat products, according to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

The EU decision will split the UK into three FMD areas: a free export area, which will be subject to normal EU rules; a restricted export area, from which exports will be subject to certain conditions; and finally a no export area.

Defra said the EU decision is expected to come into force towards the middle of November, at which point the current restricted zone will fall.

It said most of the restrictions will remain in place until mid-December, and the ban on exports of live animals of susceptible species to other EU states will remain.

Bluetongue controls remain firmly in place, it added. ak COPYRIGHT Copyright Thomson Financial News Limited 2007. All rights reserved.

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