An £5.7million funding package to help producers tackle Bovine Vial Diarrhoea has been announced by Farming Minister George Eustice.
The highly contagious disease costs UK producers an estimated £60 million per year and it impacts animal welfare within affected herds and reduces farm productivity and profitability.
Farm advisory visits
Available in England for three years through the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE), the funding will enable producers to apply for one-to-one farm advisory visits by a vet. And these vets will work with producers to tackle Bovine Vial Diarrhoea (BVD) on their farms.
The programme will also pull together new ‘clusters’ of producers to work together.
Reducing anti-microbial use
“This funding presents an opportunity for producers to get help in tackling BVD, improving cattle performance and reducing cost and anti-microbial use,” said Mr Eustice.
UK Chief Veterinary Officer Christine Middlemiss, added that the Rural Development Programme funding provides a ‘brilliant opportunity’ to tackle BVD. “This new scheme will include support for farm visits, screening cattle for disease, vet training, and the formation of local cluster groups. I encourage producers and vets to sign up and take this fantastic opportunity.”
Stamp out BVD
The project is being delivered by SAC Consulting, part of Scotland’s Rural College, under the title of ‘Stamp out BVD’. It will recruit local vets to offer the programme to producers on the ground. It is larger than any previous BVD project in England, in terms of both funding and scope, and offers a comprehensive package to producers.