HC Deb 05 July 1904 vol 137 cc644-5
MR. FIELD (Dublin, St. Patrick)

I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether the Government hire live calves for the purpose of vaccinating for lymph; whether he can state at what cost and how long those calves are kept; what becomes of them after being returned to the owner; whether this class of meat is sold as veal for public consumption; whether he has any reports on its fitness for human food by local medical officers of health; and whether it is identified when being sold as "lymph veal."


Calves are hired at a cost of from 20s. to 25s. a week for the purpose mentioned. The number of calves used varies. At present the average number is approximately fifteen weekly. The calves are kept for about two weeks. After the lymph has been collected from them, they are slaughtered, and their carcases are thoroughly examined by a veterinary expert. Sound carcases are delivered to the contractor by whom the animals are supplied, to be disposed of as he thinks fit. The concern of the Department in the matter then ceases. I am not aware that any medical officer of health has made a report on the subject, but I am advised … See (4) Debates, lxxxix., 683. that, when the carcases are found to be sound, there is no reason why they should not be sold for food. I have no information as to the practice with regard to the sale of the carcases as meat. The number of the carcases delivered to the contractor in 1903–4 was about 1,000. This is above the average.


I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether he can state how many calves are kept by the Local Government Board as reservoirs of lymph for vaccination purposes; how many animals so used are sold annually as food for the people; and where the sales usually take place.


I may refer the hon. Member to my reply to his other Question in the Paper to-day on this subject.