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Calf Lymph Production

Volume 180: debated on Wednesday 14 August 1907

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I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board, in view of the fact that a sum of £1, 350 is set down on the current Estimates for the hire of calves for the production of glycerinated calf lymph, will he state the number of calves hired for this sum and the average age of calves so hired.

The sum of £1, 350 is the amount estimated to be required for the hire of calves during the current year. The number of calves hired will depend on the number found to be necessary from time to time during the year, and it cannot at present be stated what that number will be. The number hired up to 30th June last was 203. The average age of the calves hired last year was four months.

Why does the right hon. Gentleman estimate for £1, 350 this year, which is double the amount found necessary for last year? Does he anticipate a terrible outlay for small pox?

I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board, in view of the fact that during the last financial year the Board paid a sum of £860 17s. 6d. in respect of the hire of 505 calves for the production of glycerinated calf lymph, and that these calves were not on hire for more than a fortnight, whether he will explain why the Board find it necessary to pay so large a sum as 34s. for the use of a calf for a fortnight.

Before the lymph obtained from any calf is used, the calf is slaughtered and the carcase andergoes dissection and examination in order that it may be ascertained that the animal was in perfect health and free from any taint of tuberculosis. The amount paid includes a sum for the depreciation of the value of the carcase owing to the post-mortem examination. It has not been found practicable to obtain suitable calves at less terms than those now paid.