Agriculture Committee United in the Call to Crackdown on Brucellosis

Session: 2009/2010

Date: 16 June 2010

Reference: AGR 13/09/10

The Northern Ireland Assembly Committee for Agriculture and Rural Development has expressed its condemnation of recent criminal activity in Keady, Co. Armagh where there were deliberate attempts to infect cattle in the area with brucellosis.

This highly contagious disease which causes cattle to abort has re emerged in local herds in the area resulting in depopulation of cattle. There have been six herd breakdowns in the area confirmed to date leading to a depopulation of cattle, with further breakdowns expected.

Ian Paisley Jnr, Chairperson of the Committee, said before the meeting:

“ This Committee is only too aware of the damage to the livelihoods of farmers and to the industry as a whole as a result of such irresponsible and illegal actions. This Committee echoes the calls of the Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development and the farmers’ unions in asking that if anyone has information on persons involved in such criminal activity that they contact the authorities with this information as a matter of urgency.

“There must be a united effort to eradicate this disease from Northern Ireland and to bring to book those who would wilfully put the livelihoods of decent farmers at risk for their own ends.”

ENDS

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