HC Deb 25 November 1937 vol 329 cc1423-4W
Mr. Noel-Baker

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, in view of the fact that the payments made by His Majesty's Government for compensation for animals slaughtered on account of foot-and-mouth disease amounted, during the years 1917 to 1936, to £4,900,223, and of the further fact that the total expenditure upon research into the causation, prevention and cure of foot-and-mouth disease during the financial year ended 31st March, 1937, was £16,591, he will propose that the expenditure upon this research should be increased?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

This research is under the direction of a committee of distinguished experts in veterinary and human medicine, which frames the annual estimates of expenditure, and I have no reason to think that the committee has at any time considered its work hampered by reason of lack of funds.

Mr. De La Bère

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, in view of the continued outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease, the Government research department will consider the possibility of the disease being caused by the introduction into this country of imported cabbages and cauliflowers from the Continent, the outside leaves of which are torn off and fed to cattle, and the residue of which finds its way to the garb age pails from hotels and restaurants and is fed to pigs?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

Investigations on the spot into the sources of outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease include inquiries as to the presence of any imported foodstuffs. There is no evidence that imported cabbages or cauliflowers have been associated in either of the ways suggested with any of the infected premises in the present series of outbreaks. Swill is required to be boiled for one hour before being fed to animals, and it is significant that in none of the recent outbreaks have pigs been the animals primarily affected.

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