Minister changes mind on glue board licensing scheme for England

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Minister Rebecca Pow has asked for changes to the glue board licensing regime in England, following BPCA’s lobbying efforts

Defra has told BPCA that Minister Pow has asked for the following changes to the licensing regime (for the individual licences):

  • Food manufacturing facilities should include national and regional distributors; and
  • Minister Pow has acknowledged that there may be a very low number of exceptional occasions where a pub, restaurant, supermarket, or hotel is faced with an infestation.

Defra has reiterated that individual licences will only be available in exceptional circumstances and where satisfactory alternatives are not available.

While BPCA has welcomed these changes, it said it still has concerns about how the licencing scheme will work in practice.

BPCA chief executive Ian Andrew said: “While we’re pleased that Minister Pow has finally acknowledged our concerns, we don’t believe these changes go far enough.

“We’d have liked to see the class licences expanded to include all food sites so pest professionals could continue to rapidly protect public health, without waiting many days for their individual licences to be approved by Natural England.”

Mr Andrew added: “Businesses will likely have to close for numerous days in order to keep their customers safe. Additionally, we fear the high costs of these licences will make it harder for smaller businesses to keep the public safe.”

The Glue Traps (Offences) Act 2022 will come into effect on Wednesday, July 31, 2024.

However, Defra has delayed the date pest professionals can apply for licences to Wednesday, June 19, (rather than the previously published Thursday, June 13).

Fees clarified by Defra
Defra has also clarified to BPCA that fees will only be payable if a licence is granted.

General Election
With a General Election being called, it’s now harder than ever to influence government decisions.

Mr Andrew said: “We’ll continue to try and make this licensing scheme as workable as possible.

“However, the upcoming election will make it even more difficult to influence policy decisions or get the ear of a Minister.”

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With more than 25 years' experience in business-to-business publishing, Simon is editor of LBM titles Pest and OvertheCounter. Big fan of Manchester United.