Report and record the deaths of cattle at slaughter

Abattoirs must report movements and deaths, and return documents.

Abattoirs must:

Movement information must arrive with BCMS within 3 days of the movement. Death information must arrive with BCMS within 7 days of the death.

How to report

Animals with single-page passports

For these animals, you can report movements and deaths online or by phone through:

Animals with chequebook-style passports

For animals with chequebook-style passports, you can use the same methods as for single-page passports. You can also report by post.

  • report movements on to your premises using movement cards
  • complete the ‘Death details’ section of the passport and return it with any other official identification documents to BCMS

Animals with old-style green and blue passports and/or certificates of registration

You should stamp these animals’ passports to show the date and place of slaughter.

What to do after reporting deaths online or by phone

If you report by these methods, you do not need to fill in the ‘Death details’ section of the passports before you send them to BCMS.

For animals with a single-page passport, you should tick the box to indicate that you have reported the death electronically.

Which documents to return

The documents to send to BCMS are:

  • the animals’ passports and/or certificates of registration if applicable
  • a copy of the kill sheet for each day

Returning cattle passports to BCMS from an abattoir

BCMS provides pre-paid envelopes, which abattoirs should use to return passports and copies of kill sheets. Further supplies can be obtained by contacting BCMS. Passports must be returned within 7 days of the death of the animal.

The Official Veterinarian and retained passports

The Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) Official Veterinarian (OV) and their staff will inspect a random 10% of cattle going through abattoirs to ensure that you are checking the identification of the animals correctly. To do this, they will need the animals’ passports.

If there are problems with an animal’s identification, such as a lost tag or invalid passport, the inspector will retain the passport, and will tell you what will happen to the animal. They may make further checks on more animals.

When the OV retains a passport, FSA will return it to BCMS and report the problem.

Published 6 May 2014