18 August 1999
Ministry studies BST in dairying
CONTROVERSY is looming over the use of bovine somatotropin (BST) in the dairy herd, reports The Herald.
While the USA is heading for a confrontation with the European Union over its ban on cattle treated with the hormone, the EU moratorium on this treatment in dairy cattle runs out at the end of this year.
The Ministry of Agriculture is currently studying the effects of BST at the Hannah Research Institute in Ayrshire.
The study is expected to show that extending the traditional calving cycle from one year up to 18 months, particularly with the aid of BST, would improve the economics of dairy farming – as well as the welfare of the dairy cow – through reduced stress attached to calving.