HC Deb 09 February 2001 vol 362 c720W
Dr. Jack Cunningham

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many people are employed at the cattle traceability centre in West Cumbria; and if he will make a statement on its development. [149174]

Ms Quin

619 people are currently employed at the British cattle movement service (BCMS) in Workington. A recent better quality services (BQS) review concluded that keeping BCMS in the public sector is the right way to achieve a high quality, trusted service. As a result, 452 staff currently employed on a fixed term basis will be made permanent employees. The number of permanent employees at BCMS will then be 474. A further 145 people are currently employed on a temporary basis.

The BQS review also identified measures to improve the quality and efficiency of the service BCMS provides. These relate particularly, but not exclusively, to the greater use of technology and are now being taken forward by BCMS. We will also continue to look at how BCMS can best work with the developing CAP payments agency in England and its equivalents in Scotland and Wales, as well as its potential role in tracking livestock other than cattle.