Speaking after attending the Beef Industry breakfast given by the Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street this morning, Mr Brown said,
" In April this year I said I would postpone consulting on new MHS charges to be paid by the meat industry, pending the outcome of a review of such charges. In September, I said that I was not proceeding with proposed charges for Specified Rendered Material inspections and that I was considering when to open consultations on the level of hygiene inspection charges for 1999/2000. Today I can announce that hygiene inspection charges for the whole of 1999/2000 are being held at the levels fixed for 1998/1999.
"I can also give a commitment that the rates of hygiene inspection charges in 2000/2001 should not rise by more than the rate of inflation above those currently in place. This will be welcomed by the industry."