Pressure grows for EU meat and bone meal ban Cost increases for all EU pigmeat producers, and possibly a new levy on imports from third countries to spread the burden to buyers, are rumoured in the market as opinion hardens against the use of meat and bone meal [mbm] in any livestock feed. Mbm has been a key issue in the long running dispute between British producers, retailers and importers, as the material is prohibited here but still permitted in most other major supplying countries. British pig farmers claim the unilateral ban, an anti-BSE measure, amounts to an unfair tax because they must substitute more expensive feed. The Danes and Dutch point out their supplies to the British multiples are also mbm-free, despite this not being a legal requirement in their domestic industries, but some of the importers privately admit the home producers have a genuine grievance. Suddenly events seem to be unfolding in the British industry's favour, largely due to the series of animal feed contamination scandals and growing fears of BSE on the continent. Some of the sentiment is confused, as mbm is not inherently dangerous or an unnatural ingredient in pigs' diets, but there is clear public opposition to its use. The most startling new development is a reported admission by French Agriculture Minister Jean Glavany of his belief mbm must be banned from all livestock feed eventually. Implicit in Glavany's statement and reactions from the French industry is a need for the prohibition to be applied by Brussels to ensure cost equality between member states. This could relieve some of the tension within the British market, but as industry analyst John Strak points out it would make all European Union pigmeat less competitive against third country output and risks "another transatlantic trade dispute looming if this issue isn't dealt with carefully". {{MEAT }}