Back to website

animals were compulsorily purchased - it was not "compensation"

I noticed Lord Haskins’ misguided comments. It is disgraceful that one who should be well informed makes such a misleading comparison.

But your emailer is wrong too in writing that “farmers whose animals were slaughtered received compensation”. They did not. Their animals were compulsorily purchased by the government so that the government could kill them – just as the government compulsorily purchases a house or some land that is wanted for motorway building or some other purpose thought to benefit the community. The compulsory purchase payment for the animals was not to compensate the farmer whose stock was thus taken for his loss of income which was the inevitable consequence. Farmers (or rather activities defined as “primary agriculture”) were specifically excluded from the “Business Recovery Fund” paid to compensate tourism and similar industries.

Practically every livestock farmer was stopped from trading during the foot and mouth fiasco – the equivalent of the arable farmer losing his harvest. None were compensated for this. Lord Haskins’ remarks – and those of your emailer - perpetuate the myth in the public consciousness that farmers received compensation for foot and mouth disease.