Theamount of food going to waste in the UK has hit the headlines, but theAgricultural Industries Confederation (AIC) points out that the livestock feedindustry is already working hard to recover some of the potential nutrition andreduce loss to landfill.
Recentyears have seen considerable effort go into developing supply chains to recoverthe the potential nutritional value of foodstuffs that can no longer be usedfor human consumption.
Eachyear sees hundreds of thousands of tonnes of food, technically referred to asformer food, moving into the livestock feed market, says George Perrott,AICs Feed Sector Head. It is good news for all concerned as it recovers thenutritional content of food and provides economic feed sources for livestockfarmers.
Theindustry has come a long way in setting and raising professional operatingstandards. Along the supply chain from food packers and retailers through feedprocessors and merchants to the farm, there are assurance schemes that arejoined up to ensure the safety of the ingredients being used to feed animalsand the quality of meat and other livestock products being produced.
Challengesfor processing foodstuffs into animal feed include ensuring only permittedfoodstuffs are used and avoiding the presence of packaging and associatedmaterials in finished feed.
AICmanages both two assurance schemes that provide codes of practice forprocessing and transport of former foods and is in the process of creating aspecific association to focus on the growing former food sector.
FEMAScovers the assurance requirements for all animal feed ingredients regardless oftheir country of origin and the Universal Feed Assurance Scheme (UFAS) whichaims to protect human and animal health by ensuring safe practice inmanufacture and distribution of feedstuffs. AIC is also in the process ofsetting up a new association focused on former foods, explains AIC TechnicalManager Simon Williams.
UFASjoins up with the Red Tractor Assurance Scheme that sets standards forlivestock farmers.