§ Mr. HANNON
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he has received any Reports from officers of his Ministry in any part of Great Britain which tend to show that outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease have been consequent upon the importation of cattle from the Irish Free State; whether he is aware of the stringent measures adopted by the Irish Free State to stamp out this disease; and whether, seeing the complete freedom of Southern Irish herds from trace of the disease, he will take steps to prevent injury to the Irish cattle trade through the spread of unfounded rumours?
The reply to the first part is in the negative as far as the outbreaks since 1921 are concerned, and the reply to the second part is in the affirmative. My right hon. Friend and his predecessors have repeatedly expressed the opinion that they were satisfied that outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease were not caused by infection brought from Ireland, and have announced this both in the House and in the Press.