21 June 2001
Lengthy virus inquiry ruled out
By FWi staff
THERE will be no lengthy inquiry into the foot-and-mouth crisis, a minister has announced.
Junior minister Lord Whitty said that the government would launch a full inquiry into the foot-and-mouth crisis as soon as the outbreak has abated.
But speaking during a visit to Devon, he made it clear that there would be no repetition of the BSE inquiry which lasted two years and cost 2.7m.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Lord Whitty stated that the Prime Minister did not want an inquiry which lasts as long as that.
“We need to learn lessons quickly,” he said.
Lord Whitty said it was up to the Prime Minister to decide whether the investigation will take the form of a public inquiry.
Farmers and organisations including the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons have been lobbying for a public inquiry.
Lord Whitty also promised an announcement on setting up policy commission to formulate a medium-term strategy for farming.
Meanwhile, the BBC reports that an investigation is under way into allegations of cruelty to cattle during a foot-and-mouth cull in North Yorkshire.
Local residents claim that some of the 22 cattle, killed in a field near Skipton town centre, escaped slaughtermen and staggered around after they had been shot.
The Daily Telegraph features photographs of artwork produced by children from areas most affected by the mass cull.
Animals burning on pyres, officials with guns and cows being buried in mass pits, feature in artwork submitted for a Countryside Alliance project.
The National Childrens Bureau has urged that children affected by the mass cull should be offered counselling.
Nutmeg exports from Grenada has halved as a result of foot-and-mouth and BSE on the Continent, reports the Financial Times.
The spice is used extensively in sauces and seasonings demand is closely linked to the meat industry, explains the newspaper.
One new case of foot-and-mouth was reported on Wednesday (20 June), taking the total number of UK cases up to 1769.
- The Daily Telegraph, 21 June 2001, page 14
- Financial Times, 21 June, 2001, page 36