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Irish Cattle (Sea Transit)

Volume 480: debated on Thursday 16 November 1950

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60.

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he will consult with the authorities in Eire with a view to arranging not to ship cattle to this country when severe gales are forecast, in view of the fact that 40 cattle died from suffocation or exhaustion due to the severe weather, during one voyage in September, and five had to be destroyed immediately upon arrival on account of their conditions.

I understand that the Irish regulations already provide that animals shall not be carried on any voyage if, in the judgment of the master of the vessel, there are reasonable grounds for anticipating that owing to adverse weather conditions the voyage would be attended by serious injury or suffering to, or loss of life among, the animals.

In view of the very severe punishment which is inflicted on these animals in such a journey, and as these incidents have repeatedly occurred, would my right hon. Friend consider having these animals humanely slaughtered in Ireland before their importation into this country?