McAleer calls for urgent progress on Bovine TB Eradication Strategy
Sinn Féin MLA Declan McAleer has called on the DAERA Minister to publish his department’s Bovine TB Eradication Strategy.
The party’s Agriculture spokesperson said:
“Bovine TB is a disease that we urgently need to get under control.
“The north has a herd incidence rate of 8.3% compared to 4.3% in the south, with the bTB programme costing almost £40 million per year.
“In addition to this, we have also lost £5 million per year from the EU Fund for Disease Eradication. This contributed towards the departments’ bTB programme but now there is a £5 million shortfall as a result of Brexit.
“As Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill commissioned the Test Vaccinate Remove (TVR) wildlife intervention study and set up the TB Strategic Partnership Group (TBSPG) to develop a long term strategy.
“The group report was published and consulted on by DAERA in 2016 however we have yet to see the publication of the bTB Eradication Strategy.
“With our bTB incidence rates twice as high as the south and with enormous challenges facing us in terms of future funding, I call on the minister and his department to urgently progress the Bovine TB Eradication Strategy."