Reading Time: 2 minutes Farmers are reportedly 'looking forward' to accessing the feed again and claim the risks are 'negligible' Credit: Adobe. Do not use without permission.
Reading Time: 2 minutes

A ban on livestock feed made from animal remains has been lifted in the EU – despite it being put in place as a result of the BSE (mad cow disease) epidemic of the 1990s.

Moreover, it was lifted to favor European farmers, according to reports.

Livestock feed

The Processed Animal Protein (PAP) feed is comprised of a mix of fat and protein from pigs and is known for being affordable.

Now, it is set to be fed to farmed chickens in Europe once again.

It was banned in 1994 after BSE swept across the UK – prompting the slaughter of more than four million cows.

Often, the disease is fatal after it attacks the central nervous system. It can affect people too.

However, a policy advisor said there was no health risk and that farmers are ‘looking forward’ to accessing the cheap feed again, a report in The Guardian claims.

EU PAP ban

The use of PAP feed for cows and sheep will remain in force, the news outlet claims. It will remain banned in the UK, however.

A spokesperson for the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs added: “The UK is committed to maintaining the highest animal welfare and biosecurity standards.

“And, following our departure from the EU there is no legal obligation for us to implement any of these changes.”

Mad cow disease epidemic

First spotted in the ’80s, BSE began infecting cows. But by eating beef, it affected humans too. The death toll reached 178 due to the human variant.

As a result, it became temporarily illegal to sell certain cuts of beef.

Just three years ago, a case was reported on a Scottish farm – one of 16 since 2011. As a result, four cows were killed.

However, a host of EU states began calling for a rethink of the ban over ‘negligible BSE risk status’, The Guardian report continues.

Despite this, many argue in order to prevent future widespread diseases – BSE and COVID-19 included – we must stop eating meat entirely.

MEPs will now scrutinize the plans before it can come into force.

Emily is a News and Features Writer for Plant Based News. She has previously worked as a journalist in Devon, UK, reporting on local issues from politics to the environment.