QMS chairman expresses concern

The chairman of Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) has expressed his concern over the latest outbreak of FMD.

His comments came as the Scottish Executive announced that a ban on animal movements in Scotland has been reintroduced. Movements of animals directly to slaughter will be allowed as will those requiring veterinary treatment.

QMS chairman Donald Biggar said: "This really is the worst possible news. The industry was still reeling from the effects of the August outbreak and this new outbreak has made a bad situation even worse,

"Once again priority must be given to eradicating and containing the disease but we hope this can be achieved with minimum disruption to the industry in Scotland. Therefore I welcome the decision by the Cabinet Secretary Richard Lochhead to include a derogation allowing animals in Scotland to continue to move directly to slaughter as part of the reintroduction of a movement ban.

"We are all anxiously awaiting more news on the strain of virus found on the Surrey farm. If it is the same as the strain from the August outbreak then there may well be a case for Scotland to seek an earlier exit from the restrictions than those being implemented in England.

"QMS will do everything it can to help red meat businesses that will undoubtedly be affected by this latest outbreak."

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