Experts believe the effective ban on exports of British beef will end by February.
On Wednesday the European Commission published a report in which it said it was satisfied with BSE prevention measures in the UK. The Commission is now expected draw up a proposal to lift the ban on British beef exports.
“It will take about four weeks for the proposal to be officially published and each member state will cast its vote in December,” explained Meat and Livestock Commission beef economist Duncan Sinclair. “Defra is working closely with our EU cousins in France and Germany - two member states who will want to take the time to transpose the ruling into their own country’s legislation - to try to ensure that there’s as little stalling as possible.”
Sinclair said it was vital that normal beef export status was attained by the UK as early as possible following the abolition of the Over Thirty Month rule.
“Once the OTM rule changes [on November 7], it is imperative that all export restrictions are lifted at the earliest opportunity to help minimise any potential knock-on effect on prime cattle values.”