HC Deb 19 March 1877 vol 233 cc105-6

asked the Vice President of the Council, If the attention of the Government has been called to the Resolution passed by the Council of the Royal Agricultural Society, on the 7th of March, which reads as follows:— That, seeing the precautions hitherto adopted for the prevention of outbreaks of rinderpest and other contagious diseases of animals in Great Britain have not been successful, it is the opinion of this Council that nothing short of the total prohibition of the importation of live stock from European ports will meet the exigencies of the case; and also, seeing that another serious outbreak of cattle plague has been found out, Whether the Government is prepared to adopt the precautions suggested by the Resolution mentioned?


Sir, I need hardly say that the attention of the Government has been called to the resolution referred to; and I may add that many other Memorials from various quarters have reached the Government on the same subject. The Lord President has been taking most stringent measures, as the House is aware, to prevent the spread of this terrible disorder, and as no fresh outbreaks have occurred in Hull since March 7, in Lincolnshire since March 9, and in London since March 12, there appears to be good grounds for hoping that the disease is being satisfactorily grappled with. The accounts from abroad on the same subject, I may also say, are favourable. The proposal to stop the importation of all stock, fat and store, from all parts of Europe is a very grave one, and considering its possible effect upon the food supply of the country, is one which requires the greatest consideration. Before coming to a decision upon the course which is desirable, the Government is of opinion that it would be necessary to hear more fully the views of those interested in the matter, both in town and country, and they will therefore propose forthwith a Parliamentary inquiry into the question.

Afterwards, in reply to Sir GEORGE JENKINSON,


said, it was the intention of the Government to move for a Committee of the House on the subject, and he should give due Notice of the Motion.