Collecting and treating animal by-products at collection centres

What sites are collection centres, the animal by-products (ABPs) you can treat at one, and how you must treat them.

Applies to England, Scotland and Wales

Any site that collects and treats animal by-products (ABPs) to be used as feed is considered a collection centre.

Knackers yards, hunt kennels and zoos that collect and process carcasses for feeding are all collection centres.

Hunt kennels and maggot farms which collect dead animal carcasses, process the carcasses and use the flesh as feed, will be both collection centres and final users.

If your site only receives and feeds treated flesh or category 3 ABPs, it’s not considered a collection centre, and you’re a final user.

Find out more about supplying ABPs for use as farm animal feed.

Register to treat ABPs as a collection centre

Your must register your collection centre with the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).

To do this, complete form AB117.

Find out how you must operate your site.

ABPs you can treat at collection centres

You can treat Category 2 and 3 animal by-products (ABP) at collection centres.

Category 2 ABPs must come from animals which did not die due to having a disease that could infect animals or humans.

Find out about the different categories of ABP.

Hides and skins

If you’re removing hides and skins from fallen stock (dead farm animals) to salt and store them, you must register your site as a collection centre.

If your site is registered, you don’t need to get it separately approved as a storage plant.

Fallen stock is a category 2 ABP but removed hides are considered category 3 ABPs.

After hides are removed, any flesh that you intend to feed to carnivores remains a category 2 ABP, but parts of the carcass then become category 1 ABPs.

This means that you must store hides in a separate hide store, or in the room where they are removed from the carcass, making sure they can’t be contaminated by any materials from the carcass or the flesh.

This usually means you’ll have to build a low wall around the storage area.

Treating specified risk material

Specified risk material (SRM - animal parts that carry a specific risk of disease, eg cows’ spinal cords) is a category 1 ABP.

If you collect whole carcasses containing SRM, you must:

  • remove the SRM as soon as possible after opening the carcass
  • stain the surface of the SRM with a 0.5% w/v solution of Patent Blue (E131) dye

How to treat ABPs

You can treat ABPs by either staining them, or by sterilising them.


You can treat ABPs by staining with Black PN or Brilliant Black BN (E151).

The solution must be strong enough so the colouring is clearly visible and does not disappear when the ABPs are frozen or chilled.

The whole surface of all pieces of material must have been covered with the solution.

Sterilisation by boiling or steaming

If you’re sterilising ABPs by boiling, or steaming under pressure, you must make sure every piece of material is cooked throughout.

Using ABPs safely at a collection centre

Find out how to use ABPs safely.

Disposing of waste ABPs

Your site must have facilities to destroy unused ABPs, or you must send them to an approved processing, incineration, or co-incineration plant to be destroyed.

You must remove specified risk material (animal body parts that pose a specific disease risk) from whole carcasses.

You must then stain them with a 0.5% w/v solution of Patent Blue (131) before you dispose of them at a site that’s approved to handle Category 1 material.

Published 5 September 2014
Last updated 9 October 2014 + show all updates
  1. AHVLA documents have been re-assigned to the new Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).

  2. AHVLA documents have been re-assigned to the new Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).

  3. First published.