Speaking at the Conservative party conference earlier this week, farm minister Jim Paice, said that a decision over whether to allow a pilot badger cull to tackle bovine TB willb e made within weeks. He went on to admit that it had taken longer than expected to come up with firm cull proposals, but he hope progress would be made soon.
“It’s been a lot harder than I thought it would be to deal with the minutia to make sure we will be in a position to respond to and rebut a judicial review,” he told party delegates, farmers and industry representatives at an NFU fringe event.
“That’s why it has taken longer than we hoped. It’s getting closer and we will make a decision on the two trial plots in the next few weeks.”
Mr Paice said the DEFRA team was discussing submissions made during the cull consultation and that it would need to talk to the Home Office after home secretary Theresa May was reported to have warned DEFRA minister Caroline Spelman against a cull.