HC Deb 02 March 1964 vol 690 c137W
12. Mr. Stainton

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what scientific papers his Department have published on the result of fowl pest research since the publication of the Plant Report.

Mr. Scott-Hopkins

Two papers have been published on work carried out at the Central Veterinary Laboratory, one relating to fowl pest vaccine and the other to laboratory diagnosis of the disease.

13. Mr. Stainton

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food why a fowl pest vaccine of greater strength is not being made immediately available in the worst-hit areas.

Mr. Scott-Hopkins

Vaccines are always being improved; meanwhile the most urgent need is not for a vaccine of greater strengtth, but for a greater use of existing vaccine. There is evidence that the present vaccine will give good control of fowl pest if widely and properly used. This has been shown in East Anglia in recent months where a heavy incidence of disease has been reduced to very small proportions. On the other hand, in Lancashire and more recently in Cheshire and Shropshire, where insufficient use has been made of vaccine, numerous outbreaks occurred during the winter and continue to occur.

Mr. Hilton

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much was spent by his Department on research into fowl pest during the last three financial years; and who much he estimates will be spent during the present year.

Mr. Scott-Hopkins

Precise information is not readily available, but it is estimated that the cost of research work which is being undertaken at the Central Veterinary Laboratory will average almost £15,000 during each of the years in question. This figure includes wages and salaries.