A new industry-led sheep scab group has been set up in Wales to help drive scab eradication.

The Sheep Scab Task and Finish group has been established to make recommendations to the Animal Health and Welfare Steering Group and Welsh ministers on the eradication of sheep scab in Wales.

Dafydd Jones, group member and sheep farmer said he looked forward to the group finding a workable solution to an increasing problem.

“This is one issue on a farm health plan that we cannot treat alone – our treatment programme must correspond with neighbouring farms to bring this problem under control.

“With many farms selling their lambs on commitment on a monthly basis, along with increased meat withdrawal on many products, an outbreak during most periods of the year would jeopardise the farm system and could have a serious implication on cash flow.”

Infection with sheep scab also poses a major welfare implication for infected sheep and keeping flocks free of this disease is therefore of paramount importance.

The group is made up of individuals from the farming unions, vets and other leading industry and stakeholder experts. The first meeting of the group was held in January this year.

Christianne Glossop, chief veterinary officer for Wales, said: “I fully support the efforts of this group and it is encouraging to see such a great example of the industry working together in partnership to improve animal health and welfare in Wales.

“I look forward to receiving the recommendations the group is developing. Sheep scab is a long standing problem across Great Britain and I welcome a fresh perspective on how we can work together to tackle it.”

The group will endeavour to develop a holistic and workable approach to this significant welfare problem and aims to make recommendations to Welsh Ministers by the end of the year.

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  • For further details please contact the group Chairman, Peter Davies NFU, telephone 07851 943641 or Helen Davies NSA, telephone 07976 803 066
  • Find out more and test your knowledge by visiting our academy on sheep scab