Farmers warn of disaster as badger cull is quashed
14 July 2010 - BBC News
Farmers' unions have described a decision to quash a proposed cull of badgers
in north Pembrokeshire as a disaster for farming. There have also been calls for Rural Affairs Minister
Elin Jones (firstname.lastname@example.org) to resign
or be sacked following the ruling.
Dairy farmer Brian Walters, vice president of the
Farmers' Union of Wales,
said the decision would have a huge impact on farming. "The fact it's not
happening now in north Pembrokeshire I think is a major disaster for the
industry in the whole of Wales," he said. "In my area and to the west in the
cull area, we were looking forward to having some sort of control of the disease
and the wildlife... we have incidents of one in every seven badgers with TB on
them and comparing that with cattle with one out of 140 cattle with TB."
Stephen James, NFU Cymru's deputy president, said increasing cattle controls
while doing nothing to prevent TB in badgers would cause the disease to spread
and "wreck the lives of a growing number of farming families".
But Tina Sacco, a farmer in Pembrokeshire, did not support the cull and
believes a vaccination programme would be a better option. "One thing we do know
is that a cull has been proved over a 40-year period never to have worked -
that's why we're back where we are now," she said. "Vaccination programmes have
been used throughout the world to conquer all sorts of diseases in both man and
Meanwhile Liberal Democrat AM Peter Black, who was a leading campaigner
against the proposed badger cull in the Welsh Assembly, said he believed Rural
Minister Elin Jones had "mishandled" the cull "from the start". "Not only did
she get the order itself wrong, leading to this decision [in the appeal court],
but she also embarked on a course of action in defiance of all the scientific
evidence," he said.
But First Minister Carwyn Jones has supported his defeated minister, saying that the
battering in the courts did not reflect poorly on her. "It's important that we deal
with TB in Wales because it's a problem that is growing," he said.
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