Transferring cost of BSE sample taking from Scottish Government to farming industry

Closed 9 Nov 2018

Opened 28 Sep 2018

Results Updated 18 Feb 2019

Consultation on proposal to transfer the cost of brain stem sampling of fallen stock over 48 months to industry. Analysis of responses to the public consultation exercise.



Published Responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies (TSEs) are fatal brain diseases that includes Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle and scrapie in sheep and goats. 

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has advised that BSE is the only animal TSE that has been shown to be a risk to human health.
To establish national incidences of BSE, it is an EU requirement that all EU-born cattle (excluding those born in Romania and Bulgaria which are 24 months) over 48 months of age that die or are killed other than for human consumption (commonly known as ‘fallen stock’) are tested for BSE.

The farming industry currently pays all the costs of transportation and destruction of the carcases by disposal sites, with the cost of taking fallen stock samples, at a price of £6.25 excl VAT (per sample), transporting the samples to the relevant laboratory, and the laboratory tests being borne by the taxpayer.

DEFRA have proposed for a more equitable sharing of the cost of BSE surveillance between the farming industry and the taxpayer, by transferring the cost, specifically the sample taking element, from the taxpayer to those farming businesses in Scotland that receive and benefit from the EU BSE surveillance programme, while continuing to safeguard public and animal health (by monitoring for incidence) in a proportionate way.

Why We Are Consulting

We would like to listen to your views on whether or not you believe the proposed transfer of costs for BSE samples taking is a more equal way of spreading the costs between the Scottish Government and Farming industry for BSE surveillance.

Download the consultation paper.


  • Farming and Rural