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UK Poultry Industry Hits Back over Claims of Growth Promoter Use

11 October 2013

UK - The British Poultry Council and Natiponal Farmets Union have hit out at a national press article that claims growth hormones are used in poultry production.

The article by Lynsey Hope, From farm to fork in six weeks, in The Sun newspaper discussed the age of animals at the point of slaughter and stated meat farmed in a conventional way is full of growth hormones, chemicals, pesticides and antibiotics.

The BPC and NFU said the comments could seriously mislead readers.

In a letter to the newspaper putting the matter straight, Andrew Large, BPC Chief Executive – Gary Ford, NFU Chief Poultry Advisor said: "We read with interest Lynsey Hope’s article – ‘From farm to fork in six weeks’ (The Sun, 10 October).

"Growth promoters were banned in the EU in 2006 and the British poultry industry stopped using them in the 90s. With regard to chemicals and pesticides, the UK Veterinary Residues Committee routinely tests poultry meat for any veterinary medicine and banned substances and poultry feed is also tested for any banned substances.

"As far as the use of antibiotics is concerned, all animals have a right to be treated if they get sick, and the UK has a long history of using antibiotics responsibly and under strict veterinary supervision. Should birds be treated with antibiotics, strict withdrawal periods are applied in order to guarantee that the animal products or meat can safely enter the food chain.

"Poultry producers use a range of production systems to meet the varying aspirations of different sections of the population and animal health and welfare is paramount to UK poultry producers in all rearing systems."

To view the article published in the Sun, please click here.

TheMeatSite News Desk

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