The advice sheets below have the latest information on animal health and welfare. If you need more advice call 01753 475111 (Enforcement & Regulatory option).
In the guide
This guidance is for England
Good standards of biosecurity on farms, at animal gatherings (which includes collection centres and livestock shows) and on livestock vehicles must be maintained to reduce the risk of the spread of disease.
Livestock markets, shows and collection centres are known collectively as 'animal gatherings'. Such events must be licensed by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), which is an executive agency of the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).
Whilst the risks from diseases such as foot-and-mouth remain the same, the methods of mitigating and dealing with those risks have, in recent years, been subject to a comprehensive and industry-led review. Controls are in place to mitigate disease risks and it is the responsibility of the industry to oversee and control certain biosecurity measures. However, enforcement authorities can still take action if there is a biosecurity risk at an animal gathering.
More information on general biosecurity (opens in a new window) can be found on the GOV.UK website.
Please note the following, which will affect you when delivering / sending livestock to an animal gathering:
GOV.UK animal gatherings guidance (opens in a new window) gives essential advice to supplement the legal obligations of those people running a market, as well as those attending in whatever capacity.
For further information on the day of a gathering, please speak to the licensee or animal health inspector on duty.
It is a criminal offence to fail to comply with the Animal Gatherings Order 2010. The maximum penalty is a fine and six months' imprisonment.
There are a number of offences for failing to comply with the other legislation listed. The penalties that may be imposed vary, with the maximum being a fine and two years' imprisonment.
Last reviewed / updated: October 2017
This information is intended for guidance; only the courts can give an authoritative interpretation of the law.
The guide's 'Key legislation' links may only show the original version of the legislation, although some amending legislation is linked to separately where it is directly related to the content of a guide. Information on amendments to UK legislation can be found on each link's 'More Resources' tab; amendments to EU legislation are usually incorporated into the text.