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Stackyard News Dec 05

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    Huge Step Forward For Clarity On Cattle Health


Scotland’s livestock representatives have agreed a common, industry-wide cattle health declaration form, to improve the consistency of information provided to buyers.

Until now, many different formats have existed for cattle health declarations, all trying to convey the same information. Different breed societies had their own declarations and some individual sellers also created their own individual formats. An all industry stakeholder group, made up of representatives from breed societies, auction marts, producer organisations, vet bodies, health scheme providers, and facilitated and organised by NFU Scotland, met in mid December at Ingliston in an attempt to simplify the whole system.

Nigel Miller, Chairman of the NFU Scotland Livestock Committee and a former vet, said:

“In a huge step forward for all those involved in the cattle industry, UK wide, we have all agreed upon one overarching ‘hybrid’ template which can be used across the industry.

“This will go a long way towards simplifying the cattle buying process by making health information easier to interpret.

“Cattle health certificates are becoming more and more important and are a great way of adding value within the industry. There may well come a time when health declarations are compulsory.

“It is therefore a superb achievement that this diverse group of stakeholders has managed to share expertise and achieve a common goal. Many people have gone to a great amount of effort and I think that should be recognised. I am particularly proud that NFU Scotland set the ball rolling and facilitated the consultation and final round of meetings.”

David Leggat of United Auctions said:

“We wholeheartedly welcome this development which is the culmination of a great deal of time and effort.

“In a market sense, there was some confusion caused by the presence of various different, formal and informal, declaration forms in the past.

“This new all encompassing form will, I’m sure, be the catalyst to a greater understanding of cattle health and as it is crucial that awareness of health issues increases as we near the resumption of beef exports, this development has come at a crucial time.”

Tim Brigstocke, Executive Director of CHeCS, said:

“This is a significant development in the effective usage of cattle health information. Buyers of pedigree stock will, for the first time, be able to thoroughly verify the health status of a particular animal. This will give a much needed boost to the importance of raising the profile of disease status which will be absolutely vital as we move forward in the 21st century.”

link Government Lacks Leadership On Bovine TB
link Pedigree breeders committee to help live cattle exports
link Further Success For Orkney 'Farming For The Future' Project

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