Progress on alternative control herds welcome

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013

The Ulster Farmers’ Union has welcomed the Department of Agriculture’s announcement that progress is being made towards the introduction of high biosecure alternative control herds which would be able to accept cattle from TB restricted herds.

UFU Animal Health Chairman Jonathon Moore Said; “Any farmer closed with TB knows the daily stress of having to cope with extra animals and the potential of moving cattle to alternative control herds will provide a welcome option to those farmers with overstocked herds. For years, the UFU has repeatedly highlighted the overstocking issue to DARD and the fodder crisis earlier this year brought it to the fore. Farmers with closed herds were hit particularly hard by the fodder crunch and I am pleased that the Minister and her Department have listened to the industry on this issue.  Having the option to move cattle to these alternative control herds will help to alleviate some of the pressure on those herds restricted by TB.” 

Jonathon Moore concluded; “Over the next few weeks we will continue to work with DARD on the detail of this critical issue which will strike a balance between disease control and helping to address the difficulties experienced by closed herds which could happen to any of us.  Our objective is to have the proposed alternative control herd system operational for this winter.”
In the mean time farmers who have a TB problem and envisage that they may encounter difficulties should discuss their situation with the Veterinary Officer for their area as early as possible.