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Farm costs associated with premovement testing for bovine tuberculosis
  1. R. M. Bennett, BSc, MSc, PhD,1
  1. 1 Department of Agriculture and Food Economics, University of Reading, PO Box 237, Reading RG6 6AR
  1. E-mail for correspondence: r.m.bennett{at}reading.ac.uk

Abstract

Sixty cattle farmers in England were questioned about the costs associated with premovement testing for bovine tuberculosis (TB). On average, the farmers had premovement tested 2·45 times in the previous 12 months, but the majority had tested only once. An average of 28·6 animals were tested on each occasion, but there were wide variations. The average farm labour costs were £4.00 per animal tested, veterinary costs were £4.33 and other costs were £0.51, giving a total cost of £8.84, but there were wide variations between farms, and many incurred costs of more than £20 per animal. A majority of the farmers also cited disruption to the farm business or missed market opportunities as costs, but few could estimate their financial cost. Most of the farmers thought that premovement testing was a cost burden on their business, and over half thought it was not an effective policy to control bovine TB.

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