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These rules give consumers confidence that meat is safe. The aim of these requirements is to protect human and animal health by minimising the risk posed to human and animal health by certain Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies (TSEs), such as scrapie and Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathies (BSE). They apply to you if you keep ruminant animals.


‘Ruminant’ includes: cattle; sheep; goats; camelids; bison; buffalo; deer; antelope; and wildebeest.

‘Prohibited proteins’ are processed animal protein including dried terrestrial invertebrates (insects) (with specific exemptions) and gelatine from ruminants e.g. beef gelatine (including when in surplus foodstuffs).

‘Restricted proteins’ are animal proteins restricted to  non-ruminant feed production: fishmeal (which includes dried aquatic invertebrates from ABP approved premises), blood products of non-ruminant origin, dicalcium phosphate and tricalcium phosphate of animal origin. Also included are processed animal proteins of  non-ruminant origin, including pig and poultry meal for feeding aquaculture animals.

Main requirements

You must not:

  • feed animal derived protein or any feeding stuff that contains animal protein to ruminants, with the exception of the following (subject to any required sourcing and processing, for example it cannot be catering waste):
    • milk, milk-based products and colostrum
    • eggs and egg products
    • gelatine from non-ruminants
    • hydrolysed proteins derived from non-ruminants or from ruminant hides and skins
    • milk replacers for unweaned ruminants containing fishmeal, if registered by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA)
  • feed products containing prohibited proteins to any farmed animals or mix prohibited proteins with feeding stuffs
  • use restricted proteins to produce feed for  non-ruminants, unless you have received authorisation from APHA
  • use feed products containing restricted proteins on a farm where there are ruminant species present, unless APHA have confirmed you have been registered
  • export from the UK any bovine animal born or reared in the UK before 1 August 1996
  • place on the market or export any products consisting of or incorporating any material (other than milk) derived from a bovine animal born or reared in the UK before 1 August 1996
  • place on the market or export first generation offspring, the semen, ova or embryos of cattle, sheep or goats (of any age) without fully complying with the documentation requirements and restrictions applying to the sale or export of such products
  • move any cattle born or reared in the UK before 1 August 1996 from their registered premises, unless you have obtained a movement licence from the APHA Specialist Service Centre in Worcester

You must:

  • notify the duty veterinary officer of your local APHA office immediately if you know or suspect that an animal or carcass in your possession, or under your charge, is infected with TSE
  • fully comply with any movement restrictions imposed
  • fully comply with any order to slaughter and destroy any animal
  • fully comply with any other notices served by an inspector
  • fully comply with the inquiry carried out by an inspector to identify all animals at risk

Field checks

  • check Cattle and Sheep records are kept up to date
  • check compliance with Animal By-products Regulations regarding the disposal of fallen stock
  • check for signs of unreported disease
  • check feed and feed storage for signs of inappropriate feedstuffs and cross contamination

Further information

For additional information on TSEs, please visit the Animal and Plant Health Agency (on

NOTE: Mineral-derived versions of dicalcium phosphate and tricalcium phosphate are permitted for all livestock and are most commonly used. Feed labels that do not specify ‘animal origin’can be taken to be mineral.