Foot and mouth too ignored

From a personal point of view I have to say I’m absolutely appalled at the lack of seriousness which some people have attached to the recent foot and mouth outbreak.

A trip to my local agricultural merchants on Saturday confirmed my belief that people think this is a problem local to Surrey and affects no one else. Bearing in mind that most farmers in the area use the store, the very least I expected was a disinfectant foot dip by the door, but to my disgust there was nothing available. And this is a store just 80 miles or so from the outbreak.But my real anger must be reserved for those farmers who organised and attended a meeting in Northumberland last Monday. In a county which was the seat of the 2001 outbreak someone thought it would be a good idea to gather 100 livestock farmers in a room to discuss cattle and sheep prices after foot and mouth.

What exactly was the thought process here? “Oh there’s foot and mouth in the UK again we better make sure we get a fair price for our stock once we can trade again. Here’s a good idea lets have a meeting at the height of the outbreak to discuss it!”

Its ludicrous and while Northumberland may seem a long way from Surrey, those of us living in Devon in 2001 thought we were a long way from Cumbria – how wrong we were.

As the last outbreak proved stock move all over the UK and can carry all manner of diseases with them. Please think before you act in the next few weeks.