Muddyboots

Follow the fortunes of Muddyboots & Family on their East Yorkshire farm which has changed from dairy farm to luxury ice cream manufacture

Saturday, 4 August 2007

foot and mouth 2007

So, friends, here we go again. A return to 2001? Foot and mouth raises in ugly head once again. The press are in a feeding frenzy this morning, pictures of blazing pyres of cattle, the countryside closed down, rural businesses in tatters. Is this going to happen again, a mere 6 years after the last out break? Please don't let the incompetence of the previous outbreak happen again, the print on the official report is not yet dry.

Everything THIS time seems to have been instigated fast, & that is a first for DEFRA, even Mr Brown has cut short his UK holiday to chair the cobra committee. Have they learnt? We will have to wait & see.

Two points come to mind:-
Where has the virus come from?
The bio security in the UK is a non starter. Small posters in airports illustrate what food stuffs can be brought into the country. How many people notice these? Very few l would think. Besides what does it matter if you bring a chorizo sausage back from Spain, or bush meat in from Africa, whose going to stop you? So that means we should do like the Aussies, no food means no food items.
Secondly the immediate effect of no animal movements.
This is good in as much as the disease can't be spread to all corners of the UK like last time, but, it will have disastrous consequences on, for example, pig units, with animals waiting to go to slaughter on monday morning. These animals are 'finished' they are ready to go, being replaced on theses unitsl be youngsters. A big logistical & welfare problem. the knock on effect will be the same as last time. the major multiples will be busy today sourcing globally to fill their meat counters.

So today, the countryside has not been closed.
There are NO blazing pyres littering the countryside..we are assured this will NOT happen.

Where next then? Go out this weekend, enjoy the countryside, visit your local farm attractions, support your farm shop. Rural businesses have suffered badly this season, first with the floods & now by the over zealous press looking for that BIG story.

Lets just hope that the outbreak will be contained, after all this is the 21st Century? Will we be in control or will this be a nightmare only time will tell.

17 comments:

Vanessa said...

My family farm - or they did until my dad retired last year - and I remember with utter horror the last F&M outbreak. I hope with all my heart that this time, speedy action will contain it and that farmers and their livestock will not suffer as they did in 2001. Fingers crossed for you and everyone else in farming.

laurie said...

i remember the last time and what a tragedy it was for so many of you.

i hope this time it's a non-event.

by the way, when we came back from ireland a few years ago, we were waiting for our baggage when a beagle walked up and sat quietly by the friend we were traveling with. then an FDA guy came up and said the dog's behavior indicated that she had some food with her that she was trying to bring into the country. sure enough, she found a forgotten apple in her fanny pack and handed it over.

i've not seen dogs like that in UK or irish airports. maybe that would help....

Woozle1967 said...

I too remember the last time and pray this government supports our farmers rather than hammers the nails still further in the coffin of British farming.xx

Woozle1967 said...

PS - in response to your comment on my blog, Corse/Corse Lawn did suffer in the floods but not cut off. It was Staunton on the A417 from Gloucester that was awash (no pun!) with abandoned cars, but I can't think how you would have got in/out as Tewkesbury was flooded and not sure about further on to Cheltenham.x

countrymousie said...

We havent had pigs since the last time really, not in any great numbers. I think a Show tomorrow in Norfolk has already been cancelled.I am lucky this time with no livestock on the farm today! Was under restrictions last time as my haulage driver had been to a probable infected farm!! We were clear. Cant bear to think this is about to happen again. Where indeed did it come from. Best of luck up there Boden lady!!!!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Disinfectant. That's what I distinctly remember about 2001. I moved to this farm in August of that year and spent the first 6 months disinfecting myself, my car and everyone who visited! Now we are up to our necks in paperwork, red tape and more paperwork. We are sick of it. There is a form for absolutely everything we do, including giving the dogs a worming tablet. We are spending hundreds of pounds a year to be involved in FABBL, certain DEFRA associations and we have books containing highbrow useless information which we are supposed to read and digest till the cows come home.

I do hope we are not faced with another F&M. But if the worst comes to the worst, I wonder if we can truly rely on our present govt to carry us through and take the necessary precautions without causing the diabolical scandal which swept Britain in 2001.

Thanks for a very interesting blog, Muddy.

Crystal xx

Pondside said...

Your're right - it was to the point and a very sensible blog. If the panic in the press can be stemmed and people believe that controls are in place they will be more likely to go on as usual.
I hope, for all of you, that this will be the case.

WesterWitch/Headmistress said...

We were 'lucky' and the disease did not spread to our part of Scotland - although the drama group went to Kelso for a competition and I can remember having to disinfect everytime we left or got back to where we were staying. There was a knock on effect in the tourist industry though and of course there is no compenstion for us when people first cancel and then the bookings dry up. Our village suffered too as a lot of the shops depend on toursim for their living . .

lampworkbeader said...

In the USA the 'Agricultural Beagle' inspects all bags t the airport. There is nothing like that over here. I feel we are far too sloppy about where our food comes from. It is time everyone did there best to buy British food and take pride in the produce that is grown in this country.

Milkmaid said...

It's looking a bit like this outbreak is linked to a FMD course at Purbright, so this time the Govt really are to blame, the 6 day movement standstill should have surely helped this time, I hope so as it's nuisance and the immediate total movement ban, despite some reports of some midnight dashes
We have put all our FMD signs back up and intend to disinfect the milk tanker tomorrow, some may say we are panicking, but we escaped by the skin of our teeth last time. Tockwith Show went ahead today on the Yorkshire Ground no livestock, but these shows have got to go on, hope you are ok, we may really need the friendship of this site before we are finished

UN PEU LOUFOQUE said...

Spent yesterday evening visiting farming neighbours and told them news in Uk they were very sad. Stood watching their dairy herd ebign milked and seeing new claves born this week, got our milk and went off wondering how the hell farmers ever survive in todays world and praying to every God there is that this is a one off incicdent and they are all wrong....

muddyboots said...

we have moved the youngest heifers from 'observation barn' to field away from direct contact with general public. we have also put on web site that we are open as normal as we've had a few phone calls today checking we are open. yes, l had heard the word purbright mentioned as well.

Faith said...

I don't feel qualified to comment Muddy. Just wanted you to know I'd read your blog. It seems from the news that it has been contained. I hope and pray all will be well.

elizabethm said...

your blog says it all. we are quite isolated but only have a couple of acres so we garden really, not farm. I was watching our neighbour's calves over the hedge this morning. let's hope it is contained.

toady said...

Just watched a good TV prog on one of the Sky channels about the customs in Australia. If only they were half so diligent over here.

Suffolkmum said...

Amen to all those people calling for stricter airport controls, although I know that doesn't seem to be the culprit in this case - but scary times again, nontheless, and how horrible for those neighbouring farms who are downwind, thinking they may be incubating the virus.

Posie Rosie said...

Our show is going ahead on Thursday, without the livestock. I so hope they manage to control the spread. Posiex

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