Service delivery and efficiency
If we had accepted and sought to comply with the national Framework, we would have been unable to deliver the animal health and welfare service plan for programmed farm visits or meet our increasing reactive workload, as we would have had to focus on market visits.
The new approach and allowed us to increase our number of market-related visits; and yet at the same time, to achieve 100% of high risk visits; 93% of service requests resolved within 20 working days (target was 90%) and continue to support the agricultural industry within Argyll and Bute.
Economy and growth
Having compliant markets allows the local farming community to move livestock freely across Scotland and the UK and supports the economy. Also a good regulatory framework is key to a sustainable economy
Standards at markets have improved and there is a greater awareness of requirements in the farming community as to what is expected for livestock which is to be taken to and from market.
We have to meet our statutory responsibilities under the Act and regulate business. Notwithstanding this, we engaged with market operators and discussed our approach and any concerns they may have had prior to, and on conclusion, of the pilot. We also discussed our approach with the Lead Veterinary Officer (AHVLA) to get their support in risk assessing each market to ensure that all factors were considered through the strategy, and to try and prevent duplication of visits.
National Risk assessment scheme
Market operators are supportive of this risk-based approach, and the new national scheme has been accepted by the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers in Scotland. The new approach has been adopted by other Scottish Local Authorities, Animal Health and Plant Agency and Market Operators.