Cambridgeshire Trading Standards Service is responsible for the enforcement of legislation relating to agricultural holdings and the keeping of livestock. This covers:
- animal disease such as Avian Influenza, Foot and Mouth and Rabies
- Animal Welfare as it applies to farm animals
- identification, movement and record keeping
- transportation of animals
- disposal of dead animals and other animal by-products
- animal feed
- food hygiene at primary producers
The work includes visits to farms and abattoirs, checking farm records, reacting to complaints and inspecting livestock vehicles in transit. Much of the work is proactive, working with the farming community to provide advice and education.
Biosecurity means taking steps to make sure that good hygiene practices are in place in the livestock industry. It is imperative that all persons working with livestock take all possible precautions to ensure that animal disease is not spread from farm to farm.
Guidance for keepers of livestock and anybody who visits livestock farms go to GOV.UK.
It is a requirement that vehicles used to transport farmed livestock are fully cleansed and disinfected within 24 hours of use, or in any case, before moving any other farm animals.
The County Council has a duty to ensure that the rules concerning biosecurity are being fully complied with. Any alleged breaches of legislation will be investigated. If you suspect that someone has broken any of these rules please contact Trading Standards on 0345 045 5206.
If notifiable diseases such as Foot and Mouth, Swine Fever, Rabies, Avian Influenza or Swine Vesicular are suspected at any premises within Cambridgeshire you must contact the Animal and Plant Health Agency on 03000 200 301
Also contact Trading Standards on 0345 045 5206 or your local police station (as you have a statutory duty to inform the authorities).
The DEFRA website lists all the current notifiable diseases. You can go their website to find out more information or call the DEFRA helpline on 03459 33 55 77.
Animal records, movement and identification
Livestock keepers are required by law to keep records of all their livestock movements, births and deaths. This is to ensure that livestock is identifiable and traceable. Should there be another animal disease outbreak, such as Foot and Mouth, Avian Flu or Swine Vesicular disease, it will be vital to know where livestock is located, where it has travelled from or where it has gone to. It is essential that they are up-to-date and correct. It is the council's responsibility to encourage you to ensure that these records are maintained accurately.
For information on the movement and identification of animals:
Cambridgeshire poultry keepers can access the electronic Poultry Movement Book. You can either save these electronic movement records on your computer or print them to complete by hand and store as hardcopies.
There are also certain requirements that apply when you transport animals (both in terms of their welfare and record keeping). To find out more go to GOV.UK.
Although the rules for bringing pets into the country have now been streamlined in accordance with those in Europe, there remain stringent controls in order to ensure rabies and other animal diseases do not enter the UK. It is essential that the correct requirements are met or the animal will be detained on entering the UK and face many weeks in quarantine, costing the owner in the region of £1000. GOV.UK sets out the current requirements. If you require more information or clarification please email [email protected] or phone 0345 045 5206.
The burial of fallen stock is banned (with the exception of pets and horses). Permitted disposal routes include incineration (in an approved incinerator), rendering, knackers, hunt kennels or zoos.
The National Fallen Stock Collection Scheme was set up in November 2004 as a not-for-profit means of complying with the Animal By-Products regulations. For more information please visit the National Fallen Stock Company website or telephone 0845 054 8888.
For a list of premises able to receive and/or collect fallen livestock in East Anglia please contact the Council on 0345 045 5206.
Food and animal feed hygiene
Trading Standards are responsible for the enforcement of legislation relating to primary production of food, and the manufacture, mixing, storage & transportation of animal feeds.
Food and feed hygiene regulations now apply to all food producers, affecting all farmers and growers. All producers are required to be registered with their local authority.
You can register online the licences and registrations webpage.
Businesses who are members of the Assured Food Standards (Red Tractor) schemes will have a lower risk score and will only normally have an inspection level of 2% (non scheme members will have a level of 25%).
Please note that all livestock moving to slaughter must be accompanied by a Food Chain Information Form.
Veterinary medicine records
You need to keep a Veterinary Medicine Record purchased and administered to livestock, whether by a vet or yourself.