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Stackyard News Mar 06

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Pre-movement TB testing to pile on agony for farmers and markets

Farmers and auctioneers have denounced the Government's decision to press ahead with pre-movement testing of cattle aged 15 months and over, leaving farms in one and two year testing interval parishes, as from Monday, March 27.

In a joint statement, NFU deputy president, Meurig Raymond, and LAA chairman, Robert Whitelock, said that the decision was premature and was bound to cause serious disruption to the marketing of cattle at a time when the industry was already under huge pressure.

The statement continues: "We deplore this decision. We have repeatedly requested Defra to postpone implementation until the rules governing procedures at markets have been clarified and understood and sufficient exempt finishing units have been licensed.

"Livestock auctioneers will, of course, do their level best to minimise inconvenience to buyers and sellers, but it is deeply unsatisfactory that they should have been placed in this position."

Mr. Raymond added, for the NFU, that negotiations were continuing with the Government to ease some of the burden on farmers by paying the cost of carrying out the tests.

Both organisations will continue to seek workable outcomes to the many practical issues that remain to be resolved.

link Badger Trust welcomes pre-movement testing, but more must be done
link Defra challenged to produce sound TB science
link RABDF call for humane badger culling

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