An official from Great Britain says world agricultural leaders need to consider vaccinating livestock to prevent the spread of Foot and Mouth Disease. David Shannon is the chief scientist in the United Kingdom’s Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Over the past 15 years, Shannon’s country has had to deal with two livestock epidemics: Mad Cow and the recent outbreak of Food and Mouth Disease.
Great Britain’s last outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease ended in 1967, and Shannon says one reason things got out of hand so quickly is that few modern-day farmers recognized the symptoms early on, and few U-K farms have regular visits from veterinarians.
Shannon says five-and-a-half million animals have been slaughtered in his country to deal with the Foot and Mouth outbreak. Shannon made his comments in Des Moines at this week’s World Food Prize symposium on food safety.