Corporate advantage – 1, Badgers – 0

Having listened long to convincing arguments both for and against the culling of badgers or vaccinating of badgers and/or cattle, a watching brief seemed the only option until today, when corporate advantage yet again – as always – reared its very ugly head.

Why has this expensive advice gone unheeded?

A discussion on Radio 5 caused an online search during which news surfaced of a £50 million taxpayer-funded research programme, over more than nine years, by the Independent Scientific Group (ISG). They conducted and analysed culling trials, concluding:

”Given its high costs and low benefits we therefore conclude that badger culling is unlikely to contribute usefully to the control of cattle TB in Britain, and recommend that TB control efforts focus on measures other than badger culling.”

Lobbying by large producers and exporters who stand to lose millions?

A throwaway remark during the broadcast gave a clue. Following it up led to the information that there is an EU law against vaccinating cattle. DEFRA explained that breaking EU law by vaccinating domestic cattle would cause loss of exports to the EU in both live cattle (negligible) and cattle products (£375m in 2010).

Solution 1

Address the symptoms as the Badger Trust suggests:

“The “silver bullet” remains a cattle vaccine which will not only protect cattle from the disease but will also allow the UK farming industry to export cattle to EU countries. A test is being developed which will differentiate between a vaccinated cow and an infected cow. This will require acceptance within the EU.”

Solution 2

Being seriously considered by an increasing number of independent economists, including arch-advocate Colin Hines: rebuild and rediversify our economy by limiting what finance, food and goods are allow to enter our borders, and wean ourselves off import and export dependence.

Read more about protecting our economy on his site.

 

 

 

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Posted on September 18, 2012, in Conflict of interest, Corporate political nexus, Lobbying, Vested interests and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. R. from Moseley by email adds to the problem of TB – foot and mouth and BSE and mastitis and scrapie, etc, conditions for which many more thousands of cattle are slaughtered

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