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  Chapter 9    Chapter 10    Chapter 11   Chapter 12
  Chapter 13    Chapter 14   Chapter 15   Chapter 16
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CHAPTER 13

NPA history

NPA was formed as the British pig industry's single voice in a turbulent era of market failure, rampant disease, retailer duplicity, political infamy and a dysfunctional levy-board. It had a faltering first year, but these days a top-flight management team is in place and NPA continues to change the face of the British pig industry for the better.

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The whole of the British pig industry is in imminent danger of collapse

LETTER IN YORKSHIRE POST

From: Chris Foster,
L Foster and Son,
Elm Tree Farm,
Brigham, Driffield

Sir - As I sit down to write this letter we have just taken the difficult decision of giving up pig production and will start immediately to sell off our herd of breeding animals, many of which are still in their prime.

Myself and my family have decided, as have many other producers, that we are no longer prepared to carry on this relentless task while being unable to meet the cost of production, a situation brought about largely by unfair competition from abroad which does not have to meet the same extremely expensive welfare standards as the British producer.

We, as an industry, should be very grateful to the Yorkshire Post for highlighting our problems over the last 18 months, and for their efforts in trying to persuade the housewife to Buy British meat, the healthiest product on the market.

Unless consumers take this message into the supermarkets and refuse to be fobbed off with inferior foreign products, the whole of the British pig industry is in imminent danger of collapse: the repercussions of which' would be horrendous, affecting many thousands of people who, at this moment, do not even realise it.

We all need one another, so let us stand together and Buy British, and help our wonderful welfare friendly industry to survive.

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Pig farmers, who have made huge financial losses over the last two-and-a-half-years, are to protest outside the Royal Courts of Justice in London on June 7 at the start of their industry's Judicial Review in an attempt to gain compensation from the Government. The Government is facing a High Court challenge lasting two days over allegations that it is guilty of discrimination against the pig industry because of its failure to provide aid following the BSE crisis >>

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After she's fed them, she
could be fed to them

From Yorkshire Post, May 30, 2000

'The latest advert, which is being placed in national and regional newspapers, is the second in the past month to promote British pork and has incensed overseas producers.

'The advert attacks the practice of animal "cannibalism" by showing a sow suckling her young under the headline "After she's fed them, she could be fed to them".

'The £4.6m campaign aims to promote the pig welfare practices behind the British Meat Quality Standard Mark for pork, bacon and ham and focuses on the fact that some overseas producers are still allowed to feed meat and bonemeal to pigs.

'The campaign, jointly funded by the Meat and Livestock Commission and the Ministry of Agriculture, has been described as "tough, focused and absolutely right" by Agriculture Minister Nick Brown.

'It follows a similar advert placed in newspapers on May 11 and 12 which told readers of the tiny space 'sows are made to live in.'

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Winnie the Pig

Winnie the Pig launched her bid to become the Mayor of London, yesterday. The nine-month-old sow was entering the mayoral race as part of a continuing protest to highlight the crisis in the pig industry.

As part of her campaign trail she will lobby political debates in the run-up to the election on May 4 [2000].

Campaign adviser Jon McLeod said: "We are hoping to raise the level of debate. It is in a serious context — it is about sourcing British pork in preference to lower welfare standards. Winnie's nomination will attract a certain amount of sympathy amongst Londoners."

Winnie has been in Parliament Square with worried farmers for a non-stop vigil since the beginning of February. Her manifesto includes:

  • London school meals to include British pork, bacon and ham,
  • London hospitals to source welfare-friendly pork,
  • All London cabbies to have access to a bacon butty briefing so they can spread the word about the pig industry crisis,
  • A new crackdown on misleading labelling, to ensure London consumers are able to choose British,
  • London politicians to restrict themselves to pork.
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