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NI Panic Over Beef: 7,000 Cattle to be Culled

13 January 2009

NORTHERN IRELAND, UK - Beef farmers in Northern Ireland face ruin as approximately 7,000 cattle could face a cull. It is now believed that their dioxin contaminated meat has been banned from supermarket shelves.

Banned from consumption, these animals will have no economic value. Analysts have claimed that the cattle industry would suffer an estimated £5 million in this event, putting many farmers out of business altogether.

A compensation package has yet to be announced but it is believed that industry officials, including ministers, farmers and unionists will meet today in Stormont, Belfast, to discuss how they will overcome these issues and what options are left available to them.

News of the meeting will be made public later in the week, but until then Northern Ireland's beef farmers are left on tenterhooks.

The dioxin scare was originally highlighted last Autumn, bringing the pork industry to the centre of attention. Dioxin had managed to get into the animals through contaminated feed, although cattle were also implicated in the issue, it was believed that very few animals had fed upon the supply. However, it now appears that the problem is much more widespread than previously assumed.

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