§ Mr. Hancock
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will examine ways of improving the facilities at ports for animals exported live from the United Kingdom.
§ Mrs. Fenner
I see no need for such an examination. Under the Export of Animals (Protection) Order 1981, all food animals exported from Great Britain must, immediately before their international transport, be rested for at least 10 hours in lairage premises within a reasonable distance of the port of embarkation. The animals must be offered suitable food and water during this period, and the premises and the facilities provided must be officially approved as meeting detailed requirements.
The animals may only be exported if, on inspection in the lairage, one of my veterinary staff has certified them as fit to travel. Loading for international transport must take place in the presence of an official.