CO2 shortages could seriously impact farmers and Norfolk meat supply ‘in days and weeks’ | New
It is predicted that meat processors could run out of CO2 within a week if left unchecked
Author: Tom ClabonPosted on September 20, 2021
Last updated on September 20, 2021
Continuing CO2 shortages could have serious repercussions on local farmers and the amount of meat on supermarket shelves.
Rob Mutimer, a pig farmer from Norfolk and director of the National Pig Association, told us meat processors could run out of CO2 “within a week” if left unchecked.
It comes after a rise in gas prices has forced several domestic energy suppliers to shut down and shut down fertilizer factories that provide CO2 to UK farmers and meat processors.
CO2 is used to stun animals before slaughter and to vacuum pack food products, thus extending their shelf life.
Mr. Mutimer told us that “the situation at the farm and store level is practically intolerable” and that the industry faces disaster in “weeks” if nothing is done.
He went on to say that while he “understands that the government has problems with gas prices,” but that “the failure to provide CO2” to pig farmers in Norfolk means they will not be able to slaughter them. pigs.
He also told us that no CO2 means meat with a “very short shelf life” and “eventually no product will be put on the shelves”.
He said if he and others didn’t get CO2, they might have to “slaughter animals and send them to rendering, like we did during foot-and-mouth disease, because he didn’t there is no other way around the situation “.
He concluded that the industry “is in desperate need of a government Covid stimulus package” that allows “skilled labor to return to this country, albeit on a short-term basis … because the hole we have right now is absolutely crucifying our supply chains. “
It comes after the Ministry of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) told pig farmers they would be in “daily contact” with them about the current C02 shortage.
The National Pig Association estimates that there is currently a surplus of over 100,000 pigs on UK farms. A surplus that would increase by 15,000 every week.