Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

Welsh AMs urged to listen to science against 'cull' of badgers

Release date: 
Friday, July 18, 2008

WELSH Assembly Members have been urged to put pressure on the Minister for Rural Affairs to follow England and throw out proposals for a badger "cull' in an attempt to control Bovine TB. AMs across Wales have been written to this week by campaigning group Viva!, asking them to call on Elin Jones and the Bovine TB Eradication Programme Board to adopt animal disease methods that do not involve the slaughtering of wildlife instead. Viva! believe scientific research has clearly shown a "cull' of badgers would not only be an animal welfare disaster, it will not work and may actually spread the disease further. AMs have been warned that the wrong decision could also cause long term damage to the reputation of Wales, effecting both tourism and trade. Campaigns Manager, Justin Kerswell, says: "The trial "cull' in Wales has been touted as a "quick fix', but the Welsh chief vet Dr Christianne Glossop has since admitted that even in 2018 "the end game will not necessarily be in sight' for bTB. There are fears that badgers could be wiped out in certain parts of Wales and any "cull' could last into the 2030s. This is clearly unacceptable. "We not only call on Ms Jones to reverse the decision but are calling on consumers to reject meat and dairy " the very things that are driving this problem.' Viva! has already seen huge support in Wales against the "cull', with over 300 people attending their Rally in June outside the Welsh Assembly in Cardiff, which gained national coverage. AMs also received a copy of Viva!'s fully-referenced fact sheet on the issue, which is available to view by visiting www.viva.org.uk/campaigns/badgers/factsheet.htm ENDS For more information about this media release, contact press officer Helen Rossiter by emailing press@viva.org.uk or Justin Kerswell by emailing justin@viva.org.uk or by calling 0117 944 1000. Visit http://www.viva.org.uk/campaigns/badgers/rally.htm to see and download pictures from Viva!'s National Rally for Badgers. Copies of the letter are available on request.