Company Formed To Drive Abattoir Plans

A new company is being formed to drive forward plans for an abattoir on St Mary’s.

IOS Livestock Association will provide a vehicle, which can apply for any grant funding and talk with a unified voice to other appropriate bodies like the Council or Government agencies.

Ben Julian, who attended the meeting of interested parties on Monday, says there are no official directors, shareholders or members yet but the group will be encouraging all livestock producers and those with an interest to join the association.

The last 4 months have added to the complexity of the plan. The most recent discussions were centred on slaughtering animals at a new abattoir with final butchery being undertaken at the butchers on Garrison Lane.

Ben says now that Griff’s shop has closed they will need a cutting room on site but there won’t be a shop.

The challenge, he says, will be brining the whole process of production, slaughter, butchery and marketing together.

One of the new company’s challenges will be dealing with the Environment Agency.

Ben says they have put up “some pretty high fences” over how they deal with waste washing water.

The Agency suggested using consultants for an environmental survey but Ben says cost would be prohibitive and he hopes that they will introduce “a degree of proportionality” into discussions because of the economic and environmental benefits the scheme would have for the wider livestock industry on Scilly.

Ben would rather initiate discussions with the Council and Environment Agency on the proposed site for an abattoir.

He says they have reduced a working list to two possible locations.

In the near future a small group of farmers is hoping to travel to Launceston to spend time with butcher and slaughterhouse owner Phillip Warren to look at his operation and meet some of his farmers, “hopefully for inspiration,” says Ben.