§ Dr. Strang
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in which countries there are(a) virulent and (b) non-virulent strains of the bovine immunodeficiency virus; and what plans the Government have for the eradication of virulent BIV from the United Kingdom.
§ Mr. Waldegrave
To date, only three isolations of bovine immunodeficiency-like virus have been recorded from two herds in the United States of America. It has not been possible as yet to ascribe virulence or non-virulence to this virus. There is, however, serological evidence that BIV exists in cattle in a number of countries, including the United States of America, Canada, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Venezuela and Costa Rica, and the virus probably has a worldwide distribution. Experience to date in those countries would suggest that the virus does not produce a specific disease condition and we understand that no control measures are applied in any country. The Government have considered all the available evidence about the virus very carefully and do not consider it necessary to introduce an eradication programme.