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Bovine Tuberculosis

Volume 450: debated on Wednesday 11 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what account he will take of the results from the Citizens Jury run as part of the recent consultation on a new strategy for bovine TB. (89696)

The Citizens’ Panels are an integral part of the wider public consultation on badger culling. A decision on badger culling will be based on a sound scientific and practical foundation and will take into account all available evidence including the results from the public consultation.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the correlation between the number of incidents of bovine TB in cattle herds and the change in compensation payments to a tabular system. (91203)

[holding answer 18 September 2006]: At my request, the chief veterinary officer (CVO) carried out a review on the causes of the recent fall in the number of new TB incidents. Her report assessed a range of factors which may have reduced the risk of disease-spread or led to changes in behaviour among cattle farmers. It concluded that the new compensation arrangements were relatively recent and could not have had a significant effect on the reduction in TB we have experienced.

Additionally, it should be noted that while the table valuation system for determining TB compensation has not been adopted in Wales, the drop in new TB incidents has been experienced in both Wales and England.

The CVO’s report is available on the DEFRA website at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/tb/pdf/cvo-tbstatement.pdf