Clause 2 - Extension of power to slaughter

Part of Animal Health Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:45 pm on 29 November 2001.

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Photo of Elliot Morley Elliot Morley Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 2:45, 29 November 2001

Yes, but the definition of ``contagious'' is ``due to contact'', or certainly ``due to local spread'', and some disease vectors are not spread in that way. Incidentally, I do not want to give the impression that African horse sickness and blue tongue necessitate the culling option.

The amendment is unacceptable because it would remove the opportunity for limited slaughter to remove reservoirs of infection if it was decided that that was an option. I remind the hon. Gentleman that this part of the Bill covers only foot and mouth disease. If its powers were to be extended to other diseases, it would have to be by the affirmative resolution procedure. That is a safeguard in that it gives Parliament an opportunity to scrutinise and debate any decisions before they are enforced.