Lesley Griffiths has urged people to feed into a consultation on the important issue of bovine TB eradication before it closes early next month.
There have been a disappointing number of responses to the Welsh Government’s consultation so far, and the Cabinet Secretary is keen for farmers to have their say on an issue so important to the industry.
In October, the Cabinet Secretary launched a public consultation on a proposed regionalised response to eliminate Bovine TB.
As part of the plans Low, Intermediate and High TB Areas will be established across Wales based on bovine TB incidence levels. Each area will have a tailored approach to reflect the varying disease conditions and risks.
The consultation asks anyone with an interest to give their views on the measures to be applied to protect the Low TB Area and to reduce disease in the Intermediate and High TB Areas.
- introducing a mandatory Informed Purchasing Scheme to help farmers make informed decisions about the health of the cattle they wish to purchase
- imposing compensation penalties for cattle moved within a multi-site restricted holding
- reducing the TB compensation cap to £5,000, which would not affect the majority of farmers but would result in around £300,000 a year savings.
Not all of these long term breakdowns will involve badgers, but where it can be objectively proven badgers are responsible for the transmission of the disease, it is proposed the infected groups of badgers are trapped and humanely killed. This would be based on lessons learned from a pilot in Northern Ireland.
The Cabinet Secretary said:
“We are now three quarters of the way through our 12 week consultation on a refreshed TB Eradication Programme and I am disappointed with the fact only 18 individuals have responded so far.
“In recent events I have been approached by farmers expressing strong views on our proposals so this is clearly a very important issue to the industry. I am therefore surprised at the low response rate.
“We welcome views on all aspects of the proposals and want anyone affected by this issue to come forward and have their say before the consultation closes in just three weeks time. All responses will be considered before a refreshed TB Eradication Programme is introduced in the spring.”
The consultation closes on the 10th January. You can have your say on the consultation here: https://consultations.gov.wales/consultations/refreshed-tb-eradication-programme.