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Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many badgers have been culled in (a) Devon, (b) Cornwall, (c) Somerset and (d) Dorset in each of the last three years; what estimate she has made of the cost of culling badgers in Devon to eradicate bovine TB; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Bradshaw [holding answer 27 June 2005]: Five of the Randomised Badger Culling Trial (RBCT) areas are in Devon, Cornwall, Somerset or Dorset. However, as two of these trial areas straddle two counties it is not possible to provide the breakdown by county.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the commencement date will be in respect of powers for local authorities to introduce dog control areas; when she expects to publish regulations in respect of this matter; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Bradshaw: We hope to commence the provisions in the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act on Dog Control Orders in April 2006, and intend to consult on draft guidance and regulations this autumn.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the impact of the airborne spread of foot and mouth disease during the 2001 outbreak. 
Mr. Bradshaw: The possibility of airborne transmission of the foot-and-mouth-disease virus was assessed during the 2001 epidemic and studies have been conducted subsequently. These indicate that a maximum of 27 farms may have been infected by airborne spread.
David Maclean: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what incidents of (a) damage to and (b) destruction of wildlife caused by the use of strychnine hydrochloride for the killing and destruction of moles by mole-catchers have occurred in the last 10 years. 
Mr. Morley: The Government's Wildlife Incident Investigation Scheme (WIIS) investigates cases of suspected poisoning of wildlife by pesticides. There have been no reported cases of wildlife being poisoned by the approved use of strychnine for mole control over the last 10 years. There have been two cases of poisonings reported which may have been due to the misuse or abuse of strychnine hydrochloride when used for mole-control.
Mr. Bradshaw: The Packaging (Essential Requirement) Regulations 2003 (as amended) stipulate that all packaging should be manufactured so that the packaging volume and weight are limited to the minimum adequate amount to maintain the necessary level of safety, hygiene and acceptance for the packed product and for the consumer. To date, three companies have been successfully prosecuted by Trading Standards for placing over-packaged goods on the market.
Companies with obligations under the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 1997 (as amended) also have a financial incentive to reduce the amount of packaging they manufacture or use.
|Household waste sent for recycling or composting in England|
|Percentage of households served by a kerbside collection scheme in England|
|Amount (tonnes) of household waste collected for recycling or composting through kerbside schemes|
Mr. Bradshaw: While the Government would prefer that the tethering of horses did not occur at all, we recognise that in certain circumstances it can be an appropriate short-term management practice. The Department assisted in producing the Equine Industry Welfare Guidelines Compendium in 2002, which addresses this issue.
The new Animal Welfare Bill will place on those who own or are responsible for animals, a duty to ensure their welfare. In particular, this duty of care will be supported by a code of practice for tethering horses. Although the Government is not proposing to ban the tethering of horses altogether, the code of practice will provide a set of minimum required welfare standards, including information on the correct type of equipment to be used to provide protection for tethered horses.
Dr. Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proportion of construction waste was timber in each of the last five years; what proportion of such timber was segregated for recycling into raw pulp or chipboard in each year; and what proportion of the remaining timber was landfilled in each year. 
Peter Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what discussions she has had with (a) small animal vets and (b) their representatives on the implementation of the EU Directive on batch recording and traceability of veterinary medicines; 
(3) what assessment she has made of the effect on small animal vets of the record-keeping requirements in the proposals of the Veterinary Medicines Directorate for implementation of the EU Directive on batch recording and traceability; 
Mr. Bradshaw: The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) is developing new Regulations setting out controls on all aspects of veterinary medicines. Their purpose is to implement an amending EU Directive, take forward relevant recommendations made in the Marsh and Competition Commission reports on the dispensing of veterinary prescription only medicines (POMs) in the UK, and replace the existing voluminous and outdated UK legislation on veterinary medicines with a single set of Regulations.
The new Regulations include provisions for retailers of veterinary POMs to record information relating to products received and supplied, including the manufacturer's batch number. These requirements are already applied to veterinary medicines for use in food-producing animals but the amending Directive extends their application to products for companion animals. We have received correspondence on this issue from a number of individuals including veterinary surgeons.
During the initial stages of developing the proposals, officials at the VMD consulted informally with a wide range of interested groups, including veterinary organisations. Following further development, a formal consultation package was published on the VMD website on 4 January 2005 and a letter sent to some 350 interested organisations and individuals. Consultees were allowed four months, until 5 May, to comment. Over 300 responses have been received and the comments, including those relating to the record-keeping provisions and their perceived impact on small animal veterinarians, are currently being considered and will be taken into account in finalising the draft Regulations. The VMD has kept interested parties informed of developments on key issues by publishing a series of reaction notes and has held public meetings on 21 and 22 June to discuss the outcome of the formal consultation. A further meeting with the British Small Animal Veterinary Association has been arranged for 29 June. VMD officials have also been in touch with officials in other member states to ascertain their approach to the implementation of these provisions.
28 Jun 2005 : Column 1406W
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