Industry bodies have called for heavy investment in a local abattoir network after the Government launched a consultation on banning live exports.
Defra Secretary George Eustice said the move would ‘strengthen the UK’s position as a world leader on animal welfare’, but the proposal has been criticised in the past for failing to take into account livestock movements between the mainland and Scottish islands and Northern Ireland.
The eight-week consultation will also seek views on how to improve animal welfare in transport more generally, looking at reduced maximum journey times, animals being given more space, stricter rules on movement in extreme temperatures and stronger regulation on transporting animals by sea.
Mr Eustice said: “We are committed to improving the welfare of animals at all stages of life. Today marks a major step forward in delivering on our manifesto commitment to end live exports for slaughter.
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