Animal Health Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:15 pm on 7th October 2002.

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Photo of The Bishop of Hereford The Bishop of Hereford Bishop 6:15 pm, 7th October 2002

I live in hope, perhaps unrealistically, that the Bill will be ever be user friendly. I detect a degree of convergence. I wonder whether we can lean on the Minister. If there is no prospect in the immediate future of a broader Bill offering many of the provisions that the Committee would like to see, I suggest that it should include a preamble that includes some kind of strategy. The amendment of the noble Baroness, Lady Byford, is headed "Strategy". A strategic prospect is needed, so that people know what the Bill is attempting to do in the context of an overall strategy that is reasonably convincing. Then we can spell out in detail how we shall deal with disease, if and when it breaks out.

I suspect that the Minister is not quite right. I believe that the indications are that the European Union report will be more positive about vaccination than the noble Lord allowed. It may even be the case that science has moved on since Anderson was doing his work. I press the point that if there is time for a further amendment on Report, it could include an element of strategic description. That would be enormously helpful.