Reddy: $2m spent annually to address brucellosis and TB

Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Disaster Management and Meteorological Services, Waterways and Environment Dr Mahendra Reddy during the February sitting of parliament. Picture: RAMA

The Fiji Dairy Industry has suffered significantly due to the bovine tuberculosis and brucellosis in the past four years.

Minister for Agriculture Dr Mahendra Reddy said the industry had lost close to 5000 animals because of those two diseases.

He also told parliament earlier in the week that the Government had spent $2million annually from the last four years to undertake the work of testing and cleaning up farms from TB and brucellosis.

“Additionally, we are unable to import animals from outside because we do not want to inadvertently introduce any new disease and we have been advised by Biosecurity (Biosecurity of Fiji – BAF) both from here as well as Australia and New Zealand that they do not want to take ownership of saying that the animals they will send from there are totally disease-free,” Dr Reddy said.

“There are diseases which exist in New Zealand and Australia which we do not have it here and we do not want to take the risk of importing any new disease which will add to the existing two that we want to eradicate.

“It took Australia 40 years to eradicate their cattle herd from TB and brucellosis and we have just began testing, eradicating, isolating and labelling the farms as disease-free farms.”

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