Mycoplasma bovis outbreak must be dealt with humanely

SAFE says that it is vital that the ongoing outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis is dealt with humanely, with high priority placed on animal welfare.

The Government and farming sector bodies announced on 28 May that an attempt will be made to eradicate Mycoplasma bovis from New Zealand, which will involve killing about 126,000 cattle over 24 months, in addition to the current cull underway. It will cost taxpayers and industry an estimated $886 million.

M. bovis has the potential for huge animal welfare issues. It can cause painful mastitis, respiratory disease and arthritis in cows; and lameness, joint swelling & severe pneumonia in calves. It can be spread by infected milk, farming equipment and cattle bodily fluids. 

"The outbreak must be controlled swiftly to stop further suffering for farmed animals, for farmers and communities, and proper focus put on the source of the outbreak,” says Campaigns Director Mandy Carter.

“It is very upsetting to see the killing cows on such a large scale. Animal industries kill thousands of animals a week as business as usual for meat processing - it’s happening in a more concentrated timeframe in this instance. Containing these outbreaks always involves significant consequences, and is vital that further animal suffering is not caused.”


29 May 2018