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BSE

Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 5:29 pm on 25th June 1996.

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Photo of Tony Baldry Tony Baldry Minister of State (Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food) 5:29 pm, 25th June 1996

My hon. and learned Friend the Member for Harborough (Mr. Garnier) made an extremely good point, saying that he hoped that the Government would do all that they could to publicise the steps that they were taking. I sometimes wish that the farming industry would take some steps to advise its members of some of the agreements that it has reached with Government. One of the agreements that the NFU and the CLA reached with Government was that priority for the over-30-month scheme should be given to clean beef. They agreed a ratio of at least three clean beef cattle to every cull cow. That inevitably meant that, in the earlier parts of the scheme, priority would be given to clean beef in the slaughterhouses. Of course, those such as my hon. Friend's constituents who primarily have cull cows that they want to be slaughtered must take their turn, which is extremely frustrating. In a moment I shall go into the details of intervention, and the help needed by producers of beef cattle aged over 30 months.