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RSPCA warns of knock-on effect
Milk price cuts will affect dairy cow welfare

Shoppers have been urged by the RSPCA to avoid purchasing cut-price milk in the supermarkets as it could have a knock-on effect on dairy cow welfare.

From August this year, it is expected that the price farmers should expect to be paid for the milk they produce will be around 5 pence less per litre than current earnings. Some supermarkets have contracts with farmers where the price of milk is linked to the cost of production; however, those who do not will be affected the most.

The main worry for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is that the drop in price will badly impact the welfare of dairy cows.

Deputy Head of the RSPCA’s farm animal science team and former dairy herdsman, John Avizienius, said: “Although a drop in cost of milk and cheap deals might seem like great news for shoppers we are concerned that ultimately it will be cows which will pay the price.

“Farmers cannot produce milk at a loss, it’s simply not sustainable, they cannot survive like that. We are in the ridiculous situation where milk is cheaper than bottled water at some supermarkets - that simply cannot be right.

“I believe shoppers would be even happy to pay an extra one or two pence on a pint of milk if it safeguarded dairy cow welfare.”



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Practices urged to support #vets4vultures

News Story 1
 Veterinary professionals are being urged to take part in the #vets4vultures online fundraising campaign. Vultures are persecuted throughout the world and numbers of some species have fallen by 99.9 per cent in recent years. Wildlife Vets International rescue and rehabilitate the birds of prey, as well as training local vets. However, the charity needs to raise £18,000 for its conservation plans to go ahead next year.

It has been selected for The Big Christmas Give Challenge, which goes live on 28 November. To help practices encourage clients to get involved, there is an online promotional pack containing resources for websites and social media platforms.

For more information emailinfo@wildlifevetsinternational  

News Shorts
Avian flu text alert service launched in Northern Ireland

A new text system to alert bird keepers to the threat of avian flu has been launched in Northern Ireland. The service will enable bird keepers to take action to protect their flock at the earliest opportunity.

Keepers who have already provided NI's Department of Agriculture with a valid mobile number have automatically been subscribed to the service and notified by text. Bird keepers who have not yet received a text should text ‘BIRDS’ to 67300 to register.