Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Forty-Fourth Report


Memorandum by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food


  1. The Committee considered the above instrument at its meeting on 21 July 1998 and has requested a memorandum on the following point:

    Article 3(2) prescribes the compensation payable where the slaughtered animal is not confirmed to have been affected by the disease as being the greater of—

      (a) the amount payable if it had been confirmed to be affected (the average cull price); and

      (b) the market value of the animal (up to £400).

    Explain the circumstances which are contemplated for taking the average cull price and why it would not suffice to take only the market value.

  2. The Ministry was asked to provide the memorandum by 28 July; the Committee has granted the Ministry an extension of time to enable reasonable consultation on the memorandum with the Scottish Office.

  3. Where disease is not confirmed the market value can be used when the owner has evidence of the value of the animal (such as an insurance certificate, a valuation certificate or a recent bill of sale) if that is greater than the average cull price. However, apart from valuable breeding stock, it is known that in the majority of cases the owner will not have such evidence available. Given the complicated and diverse breed structure of the UK industry, it would be an inappropriate use of public funds to value such animals since the cost of valuing an animal for which the owner does not have evidence of market value would far exceed its value. For such animals it was considered simpler to have a rate of compensation which remains constant for at least one month in line with compensation arrangements for other diseases, the average cull price.

  4. The Minister determines the average cull price for sheep on the basis of the average monthly prices at auction for cull ewes, as published by the Meat and Livestock Commission in its weekly UK Market Survey. A GB weighted average cull price for sheep is determined on the basis of these prices published for England and Wales, and for Scotland. For August 1998 the average cull price payable as compensation is £25.34p.

  5. This memorandum has been agreed with the Scottish Office.

17th August 1998

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