RED TRACTOR has said it will not increase the frequency of audits on poultry farms following feedback from the sector.
In December last year, the assurance scheme proposed to inspect farms four times over 36 months instead of the current three.
It was a response to the disruption to inspection regimes that both covid and avian influenza (AI) had caused.
Red Tractor said it was introducing a more formal type of virtual audit, recognising the risk AI presents in winter months.
But alongside this, the frequency of inspections would go up.
However, Red Tractor has now said it will keep the frequency of inspections the same – a minimum of one audit within a 12-month period.
A spokesperson said: “Since our announcement in December and following discussions with processors and industry bodies across the poultry sector, Red Tractor agreed to further modify the poultry scheme audit regime.
“Sites will have a minimum of one audit within a 12-month period and will not be able to go for more than a 24-month period without a physical assessment taking place on farm.
“Recognising the challenges of undertaking physical on-farm audits, the new plan will allow auditing in the last 72 hours before depopulation during housing order restrictions.
“Farms demonstrating robust compliance will have the option for a remote audit the following 12-month period.