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Bovine Animal Seizures

Volume 455: debated on Thursday 18 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which Minister authorised the decision to attempt to seize bovine animal UK OX0564 00177 on 10 January 2007; and on what date that decision was taken. (116111)

[holding answer 17 January 2007]: My letter of 15 November 2006 advised the hon. Member that I considered the animal in question to be a bovine spongiform encephalopathy cohort and that the state veterinary service would make arrangements to slaughter it. The law requires cohorts to be slaughtered as soon as possible.

A decision on when to remove an animal for slaughter is an operational one for the state veterinary service. Given the public interest generated about this animal the SVS informed Ministers of their intention to remove the animal on 8 January 2007. They were under no obligation to do so.