Bradshaw promises TB strategy before the Christmas recess

Junior DEFRA minister Ben Bradshaw has confirmed that the government intends to present a package of measures on the control of bovine TB before parliament rises for the year on December 20.

An announcement was made during a debate on the issue in the House of Commons on Tuesday 6 December.

Mr Bradshaw begged MPs to be patient for the announcement, although he said he knew they wanted one as soon as possible.

“It is going to be slightly later than we had originally proposed because of the interim findings from the Independent Scientific Group and the need for them to have a rapid peer review.

“They [the people who want the announcement] will understand when they see the interim results from the trials, the reason for us wanting to wait for them before making an announcement.”

NFU vice president Meurig Raymond said the union would continue to put forward its case ahead of the strategy coming out

“We have already made significant representations to DEFRA on this issue and we will continue to vigorously argue our case.

“We have always stated that pre-movement testing will only be acceptable if it does not add cost to industry and provided it is complemented by a systematic effort to remove the reservoir of TB in wildlife.

“We will continue to oppose the implementation of compensation tables, which we consider to be far too rigid to accurately valuate the massive range of animals in the market place.”