The Farmers Guardian held an online debate on BTB and badger culling today. Most of the argument was repetition of wildly varied statistics of unclear origin and attempts to reinterpret the RBCT findings.
Several contributors tried to get cattle vaccination into the discussion, with limited effect. Few seem to recognise the obvious - if you are trying to reduce disease in cattle, you start with the cattle and that means vaccination as well as rigorous movement controls.
Some of us are left with the impression that the obsessive concentration on badgers by unions and government is a decoy from the real issues.
Why are the farming unions not demanding that EU law (which takes precedence over ours) banning cattle vaccination against BTB be repealed immediately, clearing the way for use of the BCG cattle vaccine and the DIVA test as soon as they are licensed?
Even a voluntary scheme would reduce the number of cattle seized from farmers, without any adverse effects. Ask the Ethiopians who are already using cattle BCG vaccine as they cannot afford, economically or politically, to slaughter cattle unnecessarily.