A WORCESTERSHIRE pig farmer has said they are having "no trouble" in getting their pigs slaughtered despite the national shortage of butchers.

The shortage in industrial slaughterhouses nationally had left some farmers with too many pigs on their farms, leading to warnings 10,000 pigs a week could have to be destroyed imminently.

But Mark Bailey, of Black Pig Company in Inkberrow, has said the national issues had not affected their county farm so far, and they also did not have an excess number of pigs at the farm.

"We are having no trouble getting pigs slaughtered and butchered," he said.

"The scare mongering has driven the prices through the floor now though so we are losing money selling to the market.

"There isn't an issue, but it is making it financially unviable to keep pigs.

"We use a number of abattoirs, none of them are reporting an issue.

"It may be these farmers (who are complaining) have been relying on one abattoir where there is staff shortages.

"We are seeing these national reports but on the ground it is a completely different picture.

"It is a bit like the the fuel crisis - we will have a problem if people panic buy after hearing about it.

"There has been a similar issue with turkeys, we have seen people getting in their order early after hearing about a problem - but there are no shortages."

Meanwhile, in response to the crisis the government announced 800 visas for butchers to come to the UK for up to six months - a move Oliver Cartwright, Worcestershire's NFU spokesman said would help with the processing of the backlog of pigs on UK farms.

Under the plans there will also be funding for additional meat storage, moves to introduce processing of animals on Saturdays and the potential for longer working hours.

National Farmers’ Union vice president Tom Bradshaw called the visa announcement a “step in the right direction”.

Nationally there had been warning that up to 150,000 pigs could be destroyed as waste as the labour shortage in meat processing had led to a backlog of animals ready for slaughter.