asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he will arrange that horned and hornless cattle are not transported from farm to slaughterhouse in the same truck or van.
The separation of horned and hornless cattle would not prevent the horned cattle injuring each other. I will, however, look into the matter and consider whether it is possible to secure the desired object in some other way.
While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for that sympathetic reply, may I ask whether he will bear in mind that, apart altogether from the pain involved in these injuries, there is serious deterioration caused to stock?
The hon. Gentleman's suggestion would not prevent one horned animal injuring another horned animal even if the hornless cattle were separately transported?
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he will make a regulation forbidding the transport of young calves to central slaughterhouses unless conditions in respect of food and space during the journey are satisfactory.
It is an offence under the Transit of Animals Orders of 1927 and 1931 to overcrowd any railway or road vehicle to such an extent as to cause injury or unnecessary suffering to the animals carried therein. It would hardly be practicable to make the feeding of young calves in transit a statutory obligation but I will consult with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Food as to whether it would be possible to place some limitation on the distance calves are sent from collecting centres to slaughterhouses.
asked the Minister of Agriculture if he will introduce legislation making it imperative that cattle intended for slaughter shall have their horns treated by caustic to prevent their growth while still newly-born calves.
No, Sir. Although I agree that dis-horning diminishes the risk of injury to cattle when in yards or in transit, I do not consider is advisable to introduce legislation making it compulsory.
Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that if he were to accept the suggestion in this Question, it would give him an answer to my suggestion in Question 47?