Animal and plant health inspectors have a strong history of working together in times of disease emergency, and this will be made easier now that they are part of the same organisation. The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), launched on 1 October 2014, will play an important role in stopping pests, diseases, and invasive non-native species entering the UK.
Environment Minister Lord de Mauley said:
“Bringing together animal and plant health inspection functions in the Animal and Plant Health Agency makes very good sense. It will enable joined up working on plant and animal diseases and pests, and will increase our resilience and flexibility to respond to emergencies.”
APHA continues to operate from its existing network of field offices, investigation centres, laboratories and border inspection posts at ports and airports. Public contact telephone numbers and helplines remain the same.
You can follow the new agency on Twitter @APHAgovuk and on Facebook at aphagov.