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More Tuberculosis Herd Information to Inform Cattle Buying

14 November 2013

UK – Livestock markets are gathering bovine tuberculosis (bTB) disease information from farmers with a view to display it at sales.

Farmers have also been urged to share herd health history, underscored as being particularly relevant for private transactions in an industry wide initiative started this autumn.

Buying decisions should become informed around the disease history of other holdings, particularly important when buying privately, campaign fronters, the National Farmers Union (NFU), said yesterday.

The NFU hopes that farmers will be able to manage disease risk and, especially in high risk areas, help farmers get the right price for their cattle.

“The key to unlocking this challenge is to empower farmers through better bTB information at the point of sale,” said NFU vice president, Adam Quinney. “The wider benefits of being able to buy and sell stock, knowing the risks, should allow farmers to purchase livestock with more confidence.”

He added: “There is wide agreement there needs to be many approaches to tackling bTB, one of which is better information for farmers when they are trading livestock.”

But, the system needs farmer and market cooperation. Mr Quinney explained that if good information exists, it needs to be displayed.

The NFU waits on a government computer system to log collected data to show animal movements before sale.

TheCattleSite News Desk

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