§ 18. Sir H. Harrison
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will now report on the results of the experiments with live vaccine for fowl pest; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Anthony Stodart
The field trial with live vaccine is progressing satisfactorily, but it is too early yet to draw worthwhile conclusions about its effectiveness.
§ Sir H. Harrison
Does my hon. Friend realise how urgent this problem is? A large number of those engaged in the fattening industry feel that the use of live vaccine is the only way for the future of the industry, which gives such a large amount of meat to this country. Will my hon. Friend be as quick as possible in his conclusions?
§ Mr. Stodart
I entirely accept the concern and anxiety within the industry in the middle of this terrible scourge of fowl pest which is raging at the moment. We hope to have the conclusions of these tests in about 10 days.
§ Mr. Cledwyn Hughes
In view of the continuing gravity of this epidemic, may I ask the hon. Gentleman and the Minister to consider the advisability of setting up an independent inquiry into its causes and effects and into the advisability of using live vaccine, because I understand that the use of live vaccine is an acceptance that the disease has become endemic in the country?
§ Mr. Stodart
I am prepared to examine the right hon. Gentleman's idea and do anything which will help to ensure that we are not afflicted in this way again.