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Dairy Cattle (Shows)

Volume 236: debated on Monday 10 March 1930

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asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he has consulted the Royal Agricultural Society and other similar societies as to the effect the Order recently issued by the Minister of Health to prohibit the entries of all animals licensed in certified and Grade A (TT) herds is likely to have on their shows; and whether he can give the number of cases, if any, that have been affected with tuberculosis by contact with other animals at agricultural shows?

The answer to the first part of the question is in the negative, but my right hon. Friend the Minister of Health consulted the Certified and Grade A (Tuberculin Tested) Milk Producers' Association and also the British Dairy Farmers' Association, as well as the Ministry of Agriculture, before issuing the Circular which makes effective the provisions contained in the Milk (Special Designations) Order of 1923, requiring licensed herds to be completely isolated from all other cattle. I regret I have no information as to the number of cases of tuberculosis in licensed herds due to contact with other animals at shows. Further inquiries are being made into the possibility of making adequate arrangements for isolation in these cases.

Does the right hon. Gentleman think that at shows like the Royal Show there is any possible chance of contracting tuberculosis, and would he not allow these cattle to be exhibited at such shows, even if they are not closed in?

I can assure the hon. and gallant Member that there must be many possibilities of animals being taken to shows and being exhibited under these circumstances. It is only with a view to carrying out the existing Law that these Orders have been made.

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the fact that these animals cannot go to shows and get prizes lowers their value for exporting purposes, and lowers the value of pedigree stock in this country?