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Singaporean Visit Hopes to Increase Confidence in UK Beef’

02 August 2013

UK - A delegation led by Dr Chew Siang Thai, Director General of the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) of Singapore has visited the AHVLA to learn about the effectiveness of the UK’s BSE surveillance and control, which has led to the lifting of many of the bans on British beef that were imposed at the height of the BSE food scare.

The team from Singapore had already visited meat plants and slaughterhouses with a view to approve beef exports from the UK and asked to visit AHVLA’s central laboratory at Weybridge to hear the latest news on BSE science and how controls are monitored by AHVLA’s reference laboratories.

The delegation toured the TSE laboratories at Weybridge and met AHVLA scientists to discuss BSE in the UK and EU, controls and testing regimes and the scientific rationale for raising the age of testing for BSE.

Dr Jim Hope, AHVLA’s Lead Scientist for TSE, said: “The visit showed the effectiveness of our TSE controls and aimed to increase confidence in UK beef, with the ultimate hope of opening trade links to Singapore to supply prime UK beef to Singaporean hotels and restaurants.

“We explained how AHVLA delivers statutory surveillance for BSE, and highlighted our role as an international and EU reference laboratory for TSEs and the role of our experts as European Food Safety Authority consultants.

“I am optimistic that the visit will lead to a positive assessment of theUK’s BSE controls by the Singapore BSE Technical committee and the AVA Ministry, potentially enabling the export of prime UK beef from cattle under 30 months of age by the autumn of this year.”

TheCattleSite News Desk

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