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TAKING FIRM ACTION TO HELP REDUCE ILLEGAL IMPORTS - POWERS FOR EHOs

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From today, environmental health enforcement officers get more ...
From today, environmental health enforcement officers get more

effective powers to look for and deal with illegally imported animal

products. The new powers include the authority to search personal

baggage.

Lord Whitty, the food & farming minister said:

'In its Action Plan against illegal imports published on 28 March,

the government set out quite clearly its commitment to reducing the

threat of exotic disease entering the country.

'The food and farming industries and consumers alike need to feel

secure and confident that there is protection against diseases

brought in by illegal practices.

'Consumers and the food/farming and catering industries can also play

their part too by following by carefully following the rules about

imported foodstuffs and plants. In this way we can make sure we

remain safe from exotic diseases.'

The other main changes introduced by these new Regulations include:

- a right of appeal to a magistrates court for traders against an

official veterinary surgeon's decision to reject a consignment;

- a requirement that all products covered by the Regulations meet

Community import conditions, thereby removing the need for a

separate national licensing system for those products.

NOTES

1. The new regulations replace those parts of the Products of

Animal Origin (Import and Export) Regulations 1996 which dealt with

imports from non-EU countries. They implement the provisions of

Council Directive 97/78/EEC, which deals with veterinary checks on

imported products. These provisions have been the subject of wide

consultation with interested parties.

2. A public consultation on the regulations was issued on 7 June

2000.

3. The Action Plan against illegal imports can be found here .

4. Copies of the new regulations may be obtained from the

Stationery Office, Telephone 0870 600 5522; e-mail

book.orders@theso.co.uk; Internet http://www.clicktso.com

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