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Bovine Tuberculosis: Disease Control

Volume 491: debated on Monday 20 April 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much his Department has spent in each region on tackling bovine tuberculosis in each of the last three years; what estimate he has made of the amount of private sector expenditure in each region on tackling bovine tuberculosis in those years; and if he will make a statement. (266506)

The Department is unable to breakdown spend by region. The financial system that we use only allows us to record spend on a country basis and until 2008-09 on a GB basis. Therefore, we have provided as follows a breakdown of the total amount spent on tackling bovine tuberculosis in each of the last three years1 and only 2008-09 are England figures.

We have made no specific estimates of the amount of private sector expenditure in each region on tackling bovine tuberculosis.

1 Data sourced from DEFRA Oracle Financial system.

£ million

2006-07 Actual spend

2007-08 Actual spend

2008-09 Forecast spend

Cattle Testing1

37.8

32.6

32.6

Compensation2

24.5

29.7

25.7

Randomised Badger Culling Trial (RBCT)

1.6

0.03

0

Surveillance activity by the VLA3

6.4

7.9

6

Other Research

7.8

8.5

8.1

HQ/Overheads4

1.7

1.2

1.8

Total

79.7

79.9

74.2

1 Cattle testing: the cost of carrying out the testing of cattle for TB by arranging, assessing and monitoring tests, conducting investigations of incident herds and diagnostic testing by local veterinary inspectors on behalf of DEFRA. NB: This expenditure is funded by DEFRA for GB.

2 Compensation: includes payments for ‘reactors’ and ‘contact animals’ which are compulsorily slaughtered. This includes ‘salvage’ money received by the Government for those carcasses which are permitted to go into the food chain. Payments up until 2007-08 include those carcasses which are eligible for the Over Thirty Month Scheme. NB: For 2006-07 and 2007-08, these costs include Scotland and Wales and are funded by their respective Governments. From 2008-09 onwards, these costs are England only.

3 Surveillance activity by the VLA: includes all DEFRA funded work carried out by the Veterinary Laboratories Agency relating to TB in cattle and badgers including the supply of tuberculin. NB: This expenditure is funded by DEFRA for GB.

4 HQ/overheads: includes staff costs for veterinary advice and administration of TB policy in England only.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many cattle have been slaughtered because of suspected bovine tuberculosis in the last 12 months; and at what cost. [R] (269010)

In 2008, 27,455 cattle were slaughtered in England (26,038 as test reactors, 487 as inconclusive reactors and 930 as direct contacts). The 2008 spend on compensation for England was £27.5 million.