Cattle Passport Rules Tightened

SCOTLAND - MSPs have approved new regulations which will make it a criminal offence for a farmer to use a false animal passport for his cattle.
calendar icon 6 September 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
Each of Scotland's 300,000 cattle has been given a passport

Environment Minister Mike Russell has reassured farmers that honest mistakes will not be prosecuted.

The new law is designed to tighten the rules against the spread of diseases such as foot-and-mouth.

Lib Dem MSP Mike Rumbles raised concerns over simple mistakes on documentation being penalised.

The Scottish Parliament's rural affairs and environment committee voted in favour of backing the Cattle Identification (Scotland) Amendment regulations after assurances from the minister that he would address the issue if problems emerged.

Mr Rumbles told the committee: "This is a new criminal offence for farmers who make mistakes. Bad law is bad law," he said.

The West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine MSP said he did not question the "intentions or goodwill" of the minister in bringing the regulations forward.

Source: BBC news
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