§ Mr. Biffen
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will make a statement on the incidence of sheep scab during the past six months: what measures are being undertaken to eradicate this disease; and what further co-operation from the public and the agricultural industry is sought.
§ Mrs. Fenner
Seven outbreaks have been confirmed in the past six months, five in Derbyshire, one in Staffordshire and one in Montgomeryshire. All the outbreaks are connected and are on enclosed farms. All infected sheep and sheep in contact with them have been dipped in approved single-dip type sheep dips. Outbreaks earlier in the year in Yorkshire-Lancashire were on open fell land and restrictions on movement and dipping requirements are in force there. No further outbreaks of disease have been confirmed in that area since 25th January.
I am initiating further publicity, including posters for display in markets, to alert farmers to the risk of the disease, the symptoms, the preventive measure of dipping in approved sheep dips, and the need to report any suspicion of existence of the disease. The publicity is intended to obtain the co-operation of the industry, and the co-operation of the general public is unnecessary.