9 August 2001
Union mulls action on virus cash

By FWi staff

THE National Farmers Union is considering taking the Government to court on behalf of producers who missed out on fixed foot-and-mouth compensation.

Up to 150 farmers whose animals were culled before the introduction of “generous payments” in March now face ruin, claims the NFU.

Many farmers whose stock were culled early complained that they had lost out by having their animals valued at market rates.

The union insists that early victims of the epidemic will be at a huge disadvantage for restocking, reports The Independent.

But efforts to secure additional compensation are unlikely to be heard sympathetically by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

There was outcry when it emerged at the weekend that 37 farmers are each to receive payments of more than 1 million in compensation.

Compensation totalling 930m has been paid to 6000 farmers since the start of the epidemic, an average of 155,000 per claim.

Government culling teams face prosecution for breaking foot-and-mouth regulations in North Yorkshire, reports the Daily Telegraph.

Trading standards officers said members of the teams, as well as farmers, had been caught breaking biosecurity rules.

Earlier this week it was reported that dozens of farmers have been caught breaking the rules designed to stop the virus spreading in one the worst disease hotspot areas.

The Telegraph also reports that shooting organisations believe there could be chaos when the shooting season starts.

Licences are required to shoot in areas that have had the disease, but shooters say many have not yet been issued because the system is overly bureaucratic.

The Financial Times reports that trading standards officers are investigating a claim that a farmer was offered a virus-infected carcass.

Officials in Devon launched the probe after Philip Hosking, chairman of the Small Farmers Association, said he was offered the carcass for 2000.

There have been numerous reports of similar incidents and the government is investigating a case of alleged malpractice in the north of England.

One case of foot-and-mouth has been confirmed in Cumbria on Thursday (09 August) taking the UK total to 1937.

  • The Independent, 09 August, 2001, page 2
  • The Daily Telegraph, 09 August, 2001, page 13
  • Financial Times, 09 August, page 3

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