Eradicating M bovis is the only real option - Richard Loe

Morning Talk 29/05/2018
Photo credit: Unsplash.

RadioLIVE’s Rural Exchange co-host Richard Loe says the Mycoplasma bovis crisis can only be dealt with through eradication.

He told RadioLIVE’s Morning Talk that it’s the only real option authorities have.

“I think we have to throw everything at it to try to get rid of it.

“I believe it’s not treatable, so a disease which isn’t treatable - if we can, we should get rid of it,” he told Mark Sainsbury.

A healthy cow, a happy cow produces best.

On Monday the Government announced its decision to try and eradicate the disease, which has been detected at more than 30 farms across the country. It means culling another 126,000 cows at least, on top of the 22,000 already being culled.

Richard Loe. Photo credit: The AM Show.

Richard Loe says a healthy cow is more productive.

“A healthy cow, a happy cow produces best, so that’s why those farmers are attached to those animals.

“The majority of farmers are very attached to their animal’s welfare.”

No other country in the world - including the UK, Australia and the US - has successfully eradicated the disease, instead opting to manage the symptoms.

The eradication programme will take place over a decade, but most is to be done in two years. The Government says eradication is cheaper and more beneficial than managing the disease in the long-term. It will cost $886 million over the next 10 years.

The Opposition is backing the Government's decision, but National Party's agriculture spokesperson Nathan Guy says the process needs to be handled carefully.

"All the information that I've seen suggests this is the right decision for farming families throughout New Zealand.

"I'm also very mindful of the fact that the emotional toll on farming families is going to get greater."

Listen to the full interview with Richard Loe above.

Morning Talk with Mark Sainsbury, 9am - 12pm Weekdays and streaming live on 'rova' channel 9 - available on Android and iPhone.