§ Mr. Wolrige-Gordon
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what changes in Government policy have become necessary to safeguard the production and marketing of beef cattle in Scotland, following the present disastrous outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.
§ Mr. Maclay
Experience of the present outbreak does not indicate that any changes in policy are necessary.
§ Mr. Hendry
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he is aware that as the result of the epidemic of foot-and-mouth disease following a poor harvest, many farmers in areas subject to standstill orders, who have prime fat cattle ready for slaughter, are without bedding straw or fodder for additional keep, with the result that they are losing many hundredweights of live weight and suffering financial loss for which they can obtain no compensation; and whether he will instruct his veterinary officers to grant licences for the immediate removal, under such conditions as may be appropriate of such fat cattle to the nearest slaughterhouse.
§ Mr. Maclay
The removal, at midnight on 23rd November, of the restrictions in the controlled areas on the Scottish mainland should greatly ease this problem. Licences to permit movement of animals for early slaughter have been issued without interruption since the outbreak began. This will continue, subject to the capacity of available slaughterhouses to deal with the animals coming forward without delay.