§ Mr. Laurence Robertson
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what restrictions exist on butchers to provide meat cutting services to other outlets; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Ms Stuart
[holding answer 26 February 2001]: In order to provide cutting services to other outlets, butchers need to have their premise licensed as cutting plants under the red meat or poultry meat hygiene and inspection Regulations, which implement European Union Directives. The Regulations only exempt butchers who cut meat for sale from their own premises directly to the final consumer.
However, under guidance originally issued by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to cater for trading practices in Great Britain, exempt butchers may supply their other branches or mobile shops with up to 50 per cent. or 1 tonne (whichever is the lesser) of their production per week, provided the rest is sold from the premises where the meat is cut. In England and Wales, exempt butchers may also use shops not in their ownership as subsidiary outlets, provided they retain ownership of the meat until its sale to the final consumer, subject to the overall 50 per cent. or 1 tonne weekly limit.