HC Deb 10 April 1891 vol 352 c226
MR. FURNESS (Hartlepool)

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Agriculture whether his attention has been called to the hardship entailed upon butchers through the seizure, without compensation, of the carcases of animals infected with tuberculosis, evidence of which it is practically almost impossible to obtain until the animals are slaughtered; when he expects the Royal Commission on tuberculosis to Report; and whether the Government will consider the advisability of extending the provisions of " The Contagious Diseases (Animals) Act, 1878," and the amending Act of last Session, to tuberculosis, as far as compensation is concerned?


My attention has been called to the subject on more than one occasion. It is quite true that it was first introduced by the hon. Member for West Salford by a Motion in this House, and upon April 24th, 1890, a deputation on the question was received by the President of the Local Government Board and myself. A Royal Commission was subsequently appointed by my right hon. Friend to investigate the subject. I am unable to say when their labours are likely to be concluded, and, pending the issue of their Report, I do not contemplate extending the operation of the Contagious Diseases Acts in the direction desired. I sympathise sincerely with the hardships of the present position, so far as the butchers are concerned; but I may point out that the cases of pleuro-pneumonia and tuberculosis differ so greatly that, even if I took the course suggested, I am afraid it would not have the effect which is anticipated either by the hon. Member or by those whom he represents.