Printer Friendly

Video horror of foot-and-mouth farm.

The horrific scenes on the farm at the centre of the 2001 foot-and-mouth epidemic have just been revealed - and they raise serious questions about the standard of the government inspection of the site. A video has been unearthed revealing the state of the farm in the week that the foot-and-mouth outbreak was discovered.

The conditions are, to put it mildly, unacceptable.

The Northumberland farm was in a disgusting state which meant that it could not have deteriorated overnight.

It therefore beggars belief that a government inspection just four weeks earlier led to a further licence being issued allowing the feeding of swill to pigs to continue.

The video, which was discovered by Farmers Weekly magazine and shown to MPs and peers this week, shows members of the local trading standards department investigating Burnside Farm in Heddon-on-the-Wall, source of the outbreak.

Between some of the pig buildings is a pile of smouldering rubbish 6ft high and 40ft across that contains rotting flesh, decaying food, bones and sandwich wrappers.

A dog is seen scaling the heap and tugging at the skin of a dead animal.

Bins of unprocessed food are scattered around the farm.

Most are plugged with a thick grey-green crust of foodstuff that, when broken, exposes a softer mulch beneath.

When tipped on to a plastic sheet, the bins contain lumps of pink-coloured flesh or bones with green-black water.

Some of the 1,300 pieces of cutlery, mentioned in a Government vet's statement as evidence of 'illicit feeding practices' are shown in piles outside the building, while other pieces of cutlery and plastic are seen in the pens and feed troughs.

The Farmers' Union of Wales has always demanded a full and open public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the 2001 foot-and-mouth disaster.

This video supports that demand.

It is hard to believe that anyone would allow the feeding of swill to continue on a farm in such condition.

Serious questions must be asked about the role of the government inspection which led to the swill licence being renewed - and I believe that the only way to get at the truth is to have a full public inquiry.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2004 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Nov 2, 2004
Previous Article:CLA leader warns of inner-city image.
Next Article:Glimmer of hope for hostage's family.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2019 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters