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Stackyard News Feb 06

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Cattle farmers in TB damaged area must support badger cull

Cattle farmers in areas most damaged by TB must make it absolutely clear to Defra that they support the adoption of an effective badger cull and are prepared to make a big effort to ensure its success.

This is the message the National Beef Association has put out as the debate surrounding the introduction of the cull becomes more intense and the deadline for consultation responses moves closer.

“If Defra is to feel confident about introducing a badger cull it must also feel confident it has the support of the farming communities in the most heavily infected areas,” explained NBA chief executive, Robert Forster .

“Officials have made it clear that government would find it difficult to make a move on badgers unless it had firm backing from cattle farmers and was sure this would continue for as long as their support was needed.”

“There are many organisational and procedural issues to sort out before a useful and successful cull can begin but before discussion on what needs to be done can start Defra needs to feel certain it can rely on farmers and landowners to keep the job moving and see it through to conclusion - or else it will not feel comfortable about committing itself in the first place.”

“This means that loose talk about non-cooperation from farmers made angry by other issues would be counterproductive because nothing is as important to the security of cattle farming in these badly damaged areas than a strong attack on TB at source and its eventual elimination.”

“Cattle farming is moving through stressful times and perpetual TB recycling through badgers is one of its most aggravating problems.”

“It is important that the adoption of a soundly constructed cull that can achieve what is required in the shortest possible time is made a priority and other issues, all of them frustrating and annoying but less important in overall terms, are put in a proper perspective,” Mr Forster added.

link Badger Trust condemns pre-movement TB testing delays
link Start date for pre-movement testing of cattle for bovine TB delayed
link No logic to pro-badger lobby efforts to avoid anti-TB culling

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