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Mr. Morley [holding answer 26 February 2002]: The Government are determined to ensure that the State Veterinary Service (SVS) has the ability to operate with maximum efficiency and be able to respond rapidly to any emergency. As from 3 December 2001 the Chief Veterinary Officer, as Director General of Animal Health and Welfare, has taken command of the Veterinary Policy Unit, together with the Animal Health Group and the TSE Directorate. The SVS Field Service has transferred to the command of the Director General of Operations and Service Delivery.
The Structure of the SVS Field Service is currently the same as in July 2001 but we are in the process of creating a new Animal Health Divisional Office at Newcastle. This will bring the total number of Animal Health Divisions to 24.
Mr. Peter Duncan: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much is owed by her Department to auctioneers and valuers in Scotland in respect of work undertaken in controlling and compensating FMD losses; and if she will make a statement. 
Paddy Tipping: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list those landfill sites used for (a) carcase disposal and (b) ash disposal following the foot and mouth outbreak; if she will list those sites where carcases and ash are to be removed and to where; and what the costs are of this removal and redisposal. 
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The Environment Agency has at the vast majority of burn sites given permission for the ash from pyres to be buried on site after an assessment of the risks to controlled waters. Where it is not possible to dispose of it in this way (eg because groundwater conditions are unsuitable and there is a risk of potassium or other leached salts entering surface or groundwater) the ash is being removed. DEFRA has to date removed ash from 160 sites with a further 1012 sites programmed for removal, at a budgeted cost of £29.5 million.
According to our records, carcases have been exhumed at two sites in Wales (including the mass burial site at Eppynt). Exhumed carcases were either burnt or rendered. There are no current plans to exhume carcases at other sites.
Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for what reason hon. Members have not received a communication from the Lessons Learned foot and mouth inquiry; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Morley: I understand that the Lessons Learned inquiry has already begun writing to hon. Members whose constituencies form part of its programme of visits to areas of England, Scotland and Wales most affected by the recent outbreak of foot and mouth disease. The inquiry Chairman is also extending an invitation to meet these hon. Members after his programme of visits has been completed in April. In addition, I understand the inquiry has offered to meet the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee.
Mrs. Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what guidance is issued by her Department to dairy farmers re-stocking livestock post-foot and mouth disease about the risks of spreading bovine tuberculosis. 
Mr. Morley: The Chief Veterinary Officer wrote to all cattle keepers in England in October last year enclosing an advisory leaflet on how to minimise disease risk when restocking and replenishing cattle herds in the aftermath of foot and mouth disease. The leaflet "Golden Rules for a Healthy Herd" (www.defra.gov.uk/footandmouth/ farmers/recovery/cattlerestock.asp) set out advice for purchasers and vendors. Among other matters the letter from the Chief Veterinary Officer drew particular attention to tuberculosis in cattle and a specific leaflet "TB in Cattle: Reducing the Risk" (www.defra.gov.uk/ animalh/tb) was also enclosed.
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Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on the quality and hygiene restrictions imposed on milk imported to this country; what proportion of the imported milk is tested to ensure it complies to these regulations; and what volume of milk has been imported to the UK in each of the last 20 years. 
Mr. Morley: All milk and milk products imported into the UK from other EU member states must have been produced in accordance with Community rules. Imports from third countries must have been produced to standards at least equivalent to those. Among other things, the legislation lays down the approval, structural, handling and enforcement requirements to be applied. In line with Community rules, random spot checks at destination may be carried out.
Consignments of milk and milk products imported from third countries are subject to veterinary inspection on entering the EU to ensure that conditions of import have been complied with and that they have remained in a satisfactory condition during transport. This constitutes a documentary check on all imports from third countries, as well as physical checks on 50 per cent. of these.
(13) January to November
1. Data for 19882001 refer to 'Milk and Cream of a fat content, by weight not exceeding 6 per cent.'
2. Data for 198287 refer to 'Fresh Milk and Cream (including skimmed and buttermilk, sour milk and cream, whey, kephir and yoghurt)'
3. As such, data for 19882001 and data for 198287 are not directly comparable.
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UK; and what proportion of milk was sold (a) in supermarkets and (b) on the doorstep in each of the last 20 years. 
Mr. Morley: The Department does not collect data for milk sales by outlet. The Dairy Council estimates that around 69 per cent. of household purchases of liquid milk are now made in supermarkets and 23 per cent. from doorstep deliveries. 10 years ago doorstep deliveries accounted for around 61 per cent.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many (a) farms, (b) dairy farms and (c) dairy cows there were in (i) the Ribble Valley and Fulwood constituency, ii) Lancashire, (iii) the North West of England, (iv) Wales and (v) the United Kingdom in each of the last 20 years. 
Mr. Morley: Information in respect of the Ribble Valley constituency, Lancashire, the North West Government Office Region and England are contained in the table. Figures for Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland are matters for the devolved authorities.
|Year||Total holdings||'Dairy' type holdings||Holdings with dairy cows||Total dairy cows|
|(i) Ribble Valley constituency(14)|
|(iii) North West Government Office Region(15)|
(14) Parliamentary constituency data are only available for the years 1990, 1995 and 2000.
(15)Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside.
1. All data taken from the June Census Agricultural and Horticultural Census; the latest data available are from the June 2000 Census.
2. Data for England or any region/area within England do not include minor holdings.
3. A 'dairy' type holding is one where dairying is the predominant activity on the holding.
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