Farmers call for transition plan for TSE fallen stock costs

Farming leaders have called on the Government to introduce transitional arrangements to help the cattle industry cope with plans to transfer the cost of TSE testing of fallen cattle over 24 months.

Under the plan, the full cost of the scheme, apart from the actual TSE sampling, would be transferred from the Government to the industry through the National Fallen Stock Company (NFSCO).

NFU Deputy President Meurig Raymond has written to Defra Minister of State Lord Rooker expressing serious concerns at Defra's unwillingness to consider any sort of plan to help the industry cope with the transfer of costs. It currently costs Defra around £150 on average to collect, sample and dispose of a fallen animal.

Mr Raymond said the possibility of the NFSCO taking over responsibility for the collection service was a potentially excellent example of the industry working with Government to reduce costs. But he said it was very disappointing the Government was unwilling to offer any transitional funding to help develop the partnership.

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