Approved Finishing Units (AFUs) in England and Wales

AFUs provide a route for rearing, fattening or finishing cattle from TB restricted and un-restricted farms. AFUs must be approved and licensed by APHA and can only be approved in the High Risk and Edge Areas of England and the High TB Areas of Wales.

AFUs cannot be approved in Scotland, the Low Risk Area (LRA) of England or the Low and Intermediate TB Areas of Wales. However, TB restricted cattle from premises in these areas can be moved onto AFUs elsewhere in England and in Wales.

Visit gov.uk for a list of AFUs in England and Wales.

The list of AFUs is made available to the public following application approval by APHA. The list is regularly updated and may be useful for farms wishing to sell TB-restricted stock and AFUs wishing to source stock.

Visit gov.uk for APHA guidance notes and application forms for AFUs in England and Wales.

Summary of conditions for the approval and operation of an Approved Finishing Unit (AFU) in England

There are two options available, with or without grazing, depending on where the unit is located.

AFUs without grazing:

  • Can only be approved in the High Risk and Edge Areas of England
  • Can source cattle from multiple TB restricted and un-restricted herds
  • Cattle sourced from TB restricted herds must have had a clear test within 90 days preceding their movement, with the exception of calves under six weeks old
  • Strict biosecurity requirements must be in place, including wildlife proofing of buildings
  • The default position is that no surveillance testing of cattle is carried out in the unit. However, APHA have the option to test in exceptional circumstances, for example if high numbers of lesioned carcases are identified at slaughter
  • The movement of cattle from an AFU directly to another AFU is permitted under licence subject to a favourable veterinary risk assessment. Cattle must have had a clear test within 90 days preceding their movement, with the exception of calves under six weeks old
  • Cattle held in an AFU can only move to slaughter or to another AFU
  • APHA inspection of the premises and records is carried out at least once a year

AFUs with grazing:

  • Can only be approved in the High Risk Area of England where M. bovis infection is assessed to be endemic in the local wildlife
  • AFUs with grazing cannot be approved in badger control areas in England once the first year of controls have been declared effective. This includes proposed units where any of the grazing land is located in the badger control area
  • Can source cattle from multiple TB restricted and un-restricted herds
  • Routine surveillance testing of cattle occurs at 90 day intervals in the unit
  • Strict biosecurity requirements must be in place
  • The movement of cattle from an AFU directly to another AFU is permitted under licence subject to a satisfactory veterinary risk assessment. Cattle must have had a clear test within 90 days preceding their movement, with the exception of calves under six weeks old
  • Cattle held in an AFU with grazing can only move to slaughter or to another AFU
  • APHA inspection of the premises and records is carried out at least once a year.

AFUs were previously approved in the Low Risk Area (LRA) of England for cattle moving from officially TB Free (OTF) herds. These have been replaced by Licensed Finishing Units (LFUs) in the LRA.

Access more information about Licensed Finishing Units (LFUs)