Foot & Mouth Open Letter Written by Compassion in World Farming on September 13th 2007 http://www.ciwf.org/home/news_fmd07_letter.shtml
Initial letter to Hilary Benn (63kb PDF) - 5th August 2007.
Hilary Benn's reply (63kb PDF) - 15th August 2007.
13th September 2007
Rt Hon Hilary Benn MP
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17 Smith Square
Dear Secretary of State
Foot-and-Mouth Disease: vaccination
Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) is anxious, as I am sure are you, to avoid a mass cull of animals if it emerges that foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) has spread beyond the one farm in Surrey.
During the August outbreak Defra was to a degree sympathetic to the use of emergency ring vaccination in order to prevent the spread of the disease but did not in fact introduce such a vaccination programme.
We are concerned that the new outbreak could have a wider spread than that in August. Accordingly, we urge Defra to introduce without delay a programme of emergency ring vaccination. This will very substantially reduce the risk of government resorting, should the outbreak be more widespread than in August, to mass contiguous culling. Such contiguous culling is not supported by science research as an effective and appropriate approach and is ethically unacceptable to much of the public.
CIWF believes that ring vaccination would protect animals in the neighbourhood of an outbreak, greatly reduce the amount of virus excreted by the animals and so prevent or substantially reduce disease spread.
The use of vaccination was reviewed by the Royal Society in 2002 and by the EU Scientific Committee on Animal Health and Animal Welfare (SCAHAW) in 2003. Both came out in favour of an increased role for vaccination in both routine and emergency disease control.
The SCAHAW report recommended that "emergency vaccination using marker vaccines and their accompanying diagnostic tests could be a suitable tool to rapidly interrupt the chain of infection, thereby allowing an early stamping-out of the disease outbreak and avoiding collateral mass culling".
The Royal Society report concluded that "emergency vaccination should be seen as a major tool of first resort, along with culling of infected premises and known dangerous contacts, for controlling FMD outbreaks".
In conclusion, CIWF urges Defra to commence emergency vaccination without delay. Such vaccination should be vaccination-to-live; this is the approach recommended by the Royal Society.
ARCHIVE 2001 -2006
Fields of Fire witness accounts of 2001
Foot and Mouth policy 2001 - opinions
FMD Front Page Current
General Archive Page (new window)
FMD Front Page September 2005 - Dec 2005
Archive August 2007 Surrey outbreak - stage 1
Archive July 2007
Archive June 2007
Archive May 2007
Archive April 2007
Archive March 2007
Archive February 2007
Archive January 2007
Archive December 2006
Archive November 2006
Archive October 2006
Archive September 2006
Archive August 2006
Archive July 2006
Archive June 2006
Archive May 2006
Archive April 2006
Archive March 2006
Archive February 2006
Archive January 2006
FMD Front Page Oct 2004 - August 2005
General Front Page (includes other and related items)
Front Page Autumn 2004
Front Page Summer - October 2004
Warmwell front pages Spring 2004
Warmwell front pages Oct 03 - Jan 04
Warmwell front pages Sept 2002
Warmwell front pages August 2002
Warmwell front pages June / July 2002
Warmwell front pages - May / June 2002
Warmwell front pages - April / May 2002
Warmwell front pages - March / April 2002
Warmwell front pages - the earliest pages in 2001 - March 2002