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Stackyard News Jan 06

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Partnership on TB is not being taken seriously says NFU

Pre-movement testing for Bovine Tuberculosis, proposed by Defra, can only happen if it does not add any further cost burden to the industry and if Defra commits to a systematic effort to remove the reservoir of disease from wildlife. That was the strong message from farm leaders at the meeting of NFU council in Warwickshire.

The Government announced the introduction of pre-movement testing of livestock from infected areas in December, along with a consultation on a proposed package of measures to tackle TB in wildlife. The NFU believes both must go hand in hand if efforts to remove the disease are to be successful.

Meurig Raymond, vice president of the NFU, said: “We cannot let this situation carry on. Farmers are willing to play their part in controlling TB but we need to be working in partnership with government. The onus and the burden cannot be placed purely on the farming industry and only through a partnership approach can this disease be contained and eradicated.

“Neither is there any point in tackling the problem of cattle to cattle infection if the disease remains virulent in the surrounding wildlife. Failing to tackle tuberculosis in wildlife is not compassionate. It increases the risk of healthy animals contracting this debilitating and dreadful disease.”

The NFU will also continue to oppose the implementation of compensation tables, which it considers to be far too rigid to accurately valuate the massive range of animals in the market place.

Council also warned that tackling TB was the first test of the Animal Health and Welfare Strategy and failure to take positive action on the disease could result in the strategy's collapse.

link Government Lacks Leadership On Bovine TB
link TB measures too little, too late
link Nine years going no-where with the TB Forum
New TB Rules Take Effect

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