The NFU yesterday said its patience with Germany had run out and demanded an immediate export ban on German beef as the seventh import of meat with banned spinal cord entered the UK.

NFU President Ben Gill declared: “We have well and truly reached the end of our tether.

“The European Commission must ban exports of German beef now. The time for words has gone – we need action now.”

The spinal column – classified as Specified Risk Material under BSE regulations – was detected in a consignment of beef in Sussex on Friday.

Mr Gill is tonight writing again to European Food Safety Commissioner David Byrne reminding him of the string of safety concerns associated with German beef imports.

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Mr Gill said: “The Commission had no compunction in placing a ban on British beef all those years ago – it should show the same vigour now.

“British farmers stick to these regulations. They are totally fed up of this situation, especially when they are struggling to survive foot and mouth. They are not in the frame of mind to be forgiving. The Commission must ban German exports now.”

Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this document, the NFU cannot accept liability for errors and omissions.  This information should not be regarded as constituting legal advice, and should therefore not be relied upon as such.  NFU©