FARM LEADERS have rejected the government‘s plans to pay compensation for animal diseases on a category basis.

In a submission delivered to DEFRA on Thursday (Dec 23), the NFU said there were fundamental problems in the proposals.

At the moment, farmers who lose stock to a disease like bovine TB are paid compensation on the basis of individual valuations.

But DEFRA has proposed that compensation payments should be based on a table valuation, which reflects the animal‘s age, sex, pedigree status and sector.

It has also said that farmers who have animals with TB, BSE, brucellosis or Enzootic Bovine Leukosis should get the same compensation rate regardless of the disease.

NFU president Tim Bennett, said: “There is a need for review, however, the government‘s proposed category system is too narrow.

“It also does not take into account the differing breed values that exist in the market place.

“The NFU believes it is essential we retain professional valuers in the compensation process, which is still the best approach to ensure accurate valuations.

“The lack of an appeals mechanism is not acceptable.”