These recent Parliamentary Questions and answers show
  • almost £675 million compensation for cattle alone - surely Gordon Brown won't allow this policy again, in spite of progress to strengthen measures mentioned in Parliamentary Answer of 7 March 2003, copied below.

  • Secondly, what on earth was the RN doing in the FMD crisis - costs of £200,000. See below Parliamentary Question for 21 January 2003.

  • Thirdly, just to remind us that the FSA has definitely told the government that vaccinated meat is safe to eat. Parliamentary Question 7 January 2003


    Parliamentary Written Answer 6 February 2003
     
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    Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her latest estimate is of the cost of compensation to farmers for the slaughter of cattle as a result of foot and mouth disease in the last three years. [95593]

    Mr. Morley: The latest estimate of the cost of compensation to farmers for the slaughter of cattle as a result of foot and mouth disease is £674,694,849.

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    PA  7 March 2003

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    Foot and Mouth

    Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what progress has been made since the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease to strengthen measures for dealing with any new outbreak. [100551]

    Mr. Morley: The Government's Response to the Reports of the Foot and Mouth Disease Inquiries (Cm 5637, November 2002) sets out measures taken and work in hand to implement the lessons learned from the 2001 outbreak. Progress has been made in many areas. Measures of particular note are:


      the Animal Health Act 2002, which adds to powers to deal swiftly with outbreaks in England and Wales. Similar legislation is in preparation in Scotland.

     

    7 Mar 2003 : Column 1301W


      an improved Foot and Mouth Disease Contingency Plan which is currently subject to consultation prior to being laid before Parliament at the end of this month; this includes enhanced preparedness for emergency vaccination;


      tighter controls on animal movements and markets, and higher standards of biosecurity in use of livestock vehicles.

    In addition preventive measures have been taken, for example to minimise illegal imports of meat and meat products and to ban swill feeding.

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    PQ/A 21 January 2003

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    Foot and Mouth

    Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement about the (a) allocation and (b) cost of Royal Naval resources used to assist the UK community during (i) the foot-and-mouth crisis and (ii) the firefighters strike. [91230]

    Mr. Ingram: The aggregation of many of the Ministry of Defence's resources into central and tri-service budgetary organisations makes it impossible to provide a comprehensive picture of Royal Naval resources used on deployments such as those cited by the hon. Member. The number of personnel and amount of equipment used are, moreover, constantly changing in the course of a deployment lasting several months. It is estimated that around 180 RN personnel and their equipment were assisting the United Kingdom community at the height of the foot-and-mouth crisis. The bulk of the cost of RN resources will have fallen to the two distinct naval budget areas, those of the Commanders-in-Chief Fleet and Naval Home Command, which between them incurred additional expenditure of around £200K. MOD recovered these additional costs from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

    An estimated 3,000 RN personnel and their equipment were deployed on a typical strike day during the firelighters' industrial action in November 2002. It is too early to estimate how much the military assistance has cost to date, because the costs incurred since November have yet to be fully captured through the Ministry of Defence's central cost reporting system. The additional costs for the two budget areas referred to in the first part of this statement are expected to be of the order of £800K for the period to 30 November. These costs will be recovered from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.

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    PQ/A 7 January 2003

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    Food Safety

    Mr. Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent advice he has received from the Food Standards Agency on the safety of eating meat from animals which have been vaccinated against foot and mouth disease. [88994]

    Ms Blears: The Food Standards Agency has advised that there are no health concerns for consumers from eating meat, milk or other produce from animals vaccinated with any of the foot and mouth disease vaccines that are being considered for possible future use in the United Kingdom. The vaccine does not contain live virus and hence is not infectious. All of the other ingredients in the vaccine are commonly used substances that are known to be safe.