The Welsh Government has announced changes to bovine tuberculosis measures and plans for a new vet-led communication initiative.

The Welsh Government has announced changes to bovine tuberculosis (bTB) measures and plans for a new vet-led communication initiative.

Welsh environment minister John Griffiths announces new bTB measures On January 29, 2013, Welsh environment minister John Griffiths revealed some pre-movement testing exemptions would change from April 1, 2013.

The changes, which concern movements from markets and common land, include:

  • The exemption relating to movements from markets will now only include “bovine animals returning from market to the holding from which they travelled”.
  • The exemption for movements between premises sharing a right of common will now only cover “bovine animals travelling between their registered holding and commons in relation to which their keeper has rights of grazing”.

The minister also announced his administration would appoint a dedicated bTB epidemiologist by April, charged with focusing on tackling clusters of the disease, and that a new advice and support initiative would be offered to farmers.

He said: “I have also asked officials to develop a way to provide additional advice and support to farmers to clear up breakdowns more quickly and efficiently. We have started to explore how private vets could become more involved with this new initiative, called the Integrated Breakdown Management Project.

“I know that bTB is a devastating disease that has a big impact in rural communities. Since I launched the Strategic Framework for bTB Eradication last March, we have kept the programme under constant review. With the new tools I have outlined today,  we are addressing bTB in livestock and wildlife and maintaining an effective eradication programme for the benefit of farmers, rural communities and the economy in general.”

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