Poultry farmers could lose out

POULTRY farmers in the North East will lose out unless the European Union takes strong action to enforce its ban on battery farming, says North East Euro MP Fiona Hall.

The Europe-wide ban comes into effect on January 1 but some countries have failed to adopt the improved welfare standards. This has led to fears that the UK market will be flooded by cheap imports, hurting North East farmers who have complied with the new rules.

Fiona Hall has signed a Written Declaration in Parliament calling for action.

She said: “Everyone has had more than enough time to meet the new standards which bring an end to the cruelty of battery farming of hens.

“Every farmer in the North East, and across the UK, has managed it, at no small cost to their business. It would be grossly unfair if they ended up being punished for doing so.

“To ensure that doesn’t happen, I am calling for strong action from day one of the ban. Heavy fines must be levied against those farmers in other countries who have failed to improve welfare standards as required.”