HC Deb 18 November 1957 vol 578 c21
32. Mr. Kimball

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what figures he has to show the percentage of imported Irish cattle which react to the tuberculin test when tested in the United Kingdom.

Mr. Godber

Of the Irish cattle entering tuberculosis attested areas in Great Britain during 1956, 2.6 per cent. reacted to the tuberculin test here. The corresponding figure for the first nine months of this year is 2.5. No statistics are available of the incidence of reactors among other Irish cattle imported into this country.

Mr. Kimball

Is my hon. Friend aware that it is the rather dubious efficiency of the Irish Free State tuberculin testing arrangements which accounts for a very marked reluctance among farmers dealing in Irish stores or fattening Irish stores to make their own farms in this country fully attested?

Mr. Godber

I would not altogether agree on that. I should be quite willing to look at it again, but my own information is that our farmers are taking them fairly readily; and the figures I have quoted show that the percentage is indeed very small.

33. Mr. Kimball

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he is satisfied with the present standard of tuberculosis testing carried on by the Republic of Ireland on store cattle for export to the United Kingdom; or what representations he proposes to make.

Mr. Godber

My right hon. Friend is advised that the standard of tuberculin testing in the Irish Republic is effectively the same as in this country. His senior veterinary officers keep in close touch in this matter with the authorities in the Republic.