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Scrapie: Disease Control

Volume 471: debated on Thursday 31 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what progress his Department has made towards its public service agreement target of a reduction of 40 per cent. in the prevalence of scrapie infection by 2010; and if he will make a statement. (181486)

The public service agreement (PSA) target was based on a 2004 model that assumed our existing voluntary ram genotyping scheme (RGS), part of the national scrapie plan, would be replaced with a compulsory scheme which was a pending EU-wide requirement. That requirement was dropped by the EU Commission at the end of 2006. A compulsory scheme has therefore not been implemented in Great Britain and we are consulting on closure of the current voluntary scheme.

The 2004 model has recently been re-run with regard to the change in the EU position and assuming that the voluntary RGS closes. It suggests that this PSA target of a 40 per cent. reduction in the prevalence of scrapie infections should nevertheless be reached in 2011.