Reference EID. I appreciate the technology and what it will make possible, I also understand some of the practicalities of application and how it could eliminate the current need for ear tags. However, I wonder if we are letting the bureaucrats get away with pursuing a topic that is logical but uneccessary.
Why do sheep need individual identification of the particular animal, given that when there is a reportable problem, defra will then treat on a 'whole flock' basis? It seems to me that defra want individual data because it can be technically obtained, rather than because its use would bring great benefits to public health or welfare.
When you consider the resources bureaucrats put into controlling sheep and cattle, and then compare it with their inertia in more dangerous matters, one is left with the conclusion that either they are ignorant, imcompetent or malevolent. For example, they do nothing to stop human beings with every disease known to man coming into this country without any medical checks whatsoever.
For my animals I need passports, ear tags, licences, farm inspections, EID, trailer inspections, footbaths, certificates for handling and transportation etc, etc, etc.
However, if I had Aids, TB, or any/every other notifiable disease; without any medical check whatsoever, I can legally walk onto a plane which has restricted air circulation, get off and then get into a crowded tube train. From there I can then walk into a warm humid hospital and enter a ward to talk to friends. During that journey hundreds of people will have been exposed to my exhalations and presence.
I want to ask the bureaucrat, "Where do you think the real danger lies and where do you think the money should be spent?"
I am for the use of technology. However, I would like to know what benefits we get for its costs and to know that the bureaucrats are spending my money on the most important issues.
Am I more likely to get BSE from a Gimmer that has no ear tag, or of getting TB from an untested man who has walked off a plane from one of the countries where TB is endemic?