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Bovine TB
Implementing risk-based trading
  1. Nigel Gibbens
  1. Chief Veterinary Officer, Defra, Nobel House, Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR
  1. e-mail: defra.helpline{at}

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DEFRA has been working with the livestock industry and in consultation with our colleagues in Wales on ways in which cattle buyers can be helped to make more informed decisions at markets – what we have termed risk-based trading.

The introduction of new animals into a herd is a well-known route by which bovine TB can quickly spread. In the low-risk areas of England, the large majority of sporadic outbreaks we see are traced back to bought-in cattle. The buyers of new animals have historically not been offered TB information about the animal(s) before buying at markets and, therefore, have not been alerted or assisted in their responsibility to properly manage the TB risk that new animals pose to their herd. Similar proposals are currently being considered in Wales, and the Welsh Government will inform interested parties once a final decision has been taken.

Risk-based trading is a national scheme that is about providing buyers with …

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