DEFRA HAS extended its BSE surveillance testing programme to include healthy cattle aged 30-42 months slaughtered under the Over Thirty Months Scheme.

The decision to expand the surveillance programme took effect from Mon (Oct 25) and applies across the UK.

A DEFRA spokesman told FARMERS WEEKLY that none of the costs would fall on the industry and it was “merely an increase in routine surveillance testing”.

But the move ties in with a recent report by the EU Commission‘s Food and Veterinary Office which said that “a wider testing programme for BSE was needed to speed up the momentum towards ending the beef export ban”.