UK: BPEX Pig Health Scheme (BPHS) to stay
It has been confirmed that the BPEX Pig Health Scheme (BPHS) will be operating in abattoirs until summer 2015.
However, the review of the carcass data reporting system is ongoing and work is progressing on a transition to an alternative system.
Emma Bailey-Beech, BPEX Health information and Food Safety Coordinator, explains there are currently two carcase data collection methods in operation, BPHS which is run by BPEX, and the Collection and Communication of Inspection Results Scheme (CCIR) provided by the Food Standards Agency (FSA).
"The plan is to incorporate key elements of the current BPHS, into a single, cost-effective CCIR system which provides high quality post mortem data feedback to all producers."
In order to appreciate the implications of these changes and to get an understanding of how the BPHS and CCIR systems are perceived and, more importantly, how CCIR could be improved, BPEX hosted a survey.
"Surprisingly, only 76% of respondents were aware of the data reports available from the FSA through CCIR, whilst 100% were aware of the BPHS scheme," acknowledges Bailey-Beech.
Results highlighted that there are some areas of work required on the current CCIR scheme. "For example, only 25% of respondents who received CCIR said that they always, or often, discussed data with vets on routine farm visits, compared to the 76% who discuss BPHS results."
Also, only a very low proportion of respondents said that they used the CCIR data to make decisions on herd treatments or management changes. Producers highlighted that the presentation of results needs to be improved so that the information is easier to work with.
Bailey-Beech says: "The feedback from the survey has presented us with some specific work areas to address, particularly the perception of accuracy. Over the coming months, we will continue to work closely with the FSA, taking on board these comments in order to make the CCIR scheme as efficient as possible, as quickly as possible, for those involved."
"For this reason, BPHS will remain in place for at least the next 12 months, until a transition to a single, effective CCIR system which meets the needs of all key stakeholders has been achieved."
BPHS abattoir assessment dates are available online here.
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