Almost 5,000 farmers respond to bTB compensation consultation

Almost 5,000 farmers respond to bTB compensation consultation

The Ulster Farmers Union has hailed the response from farmers to DAERA’s consultation on the proposal to reduce the compensation rate for cattle removed under the bovine Tuberculosis (bTB) programme.

Almost 5,000 responses were received on the proposals which were announced by DAERA on the instruction of Chris Heaton Harris in January 2024.

UFU president David Brown said, “The UFU would like to thank all farmers who took the time to make their voice heard and respond to DAERA’s TB consultation. This was the largest number of responses to date on a TB consultation proposal and sends a strong message to the DAERA Minister on our farming families’ feelings on this subject.

“Whilst we will have to await the official publication of the summary of responses, our members who continue to be blighted by bTB on a daily basis, can take some comfort that in a previous consultation in 2021, 94.77% of respondents were opposed to the proposed amendments. The huge increase in the number of consultees who responded sends a strong message. DAERA can sustainability reduce the cost of the TB programme by tackling the disease, rather than devaluing cattle’s worth after the animals have fallen victim to a disease.

“The UFU remain determined to ensure none of the barbaric proposals come to pass and will continue to exhaust every avenue to safeguard the future of NI’s agri industry.”