In 2005, Brazil’s Ministry of Agriculture plans to invest US$ 24.15 million (65.30 million reais), more than twice what it spent last year, to attain the goal of wiping out hoof and mouth disease throughout the country and maintain Brazil’s place as the world’s largest meat exporter.
The only way to eliminate the disease is to vaccinate the entire herd. According to the Minister of Agriculture, Roberto Rodrigues, Brazil has declared a war on hoof and mouth disease, and the only way for the country to get rid of the problem is to vaccinate every animal.
The director of the Department of Animal Hygiene, Jorge Caetano, observed that outbreaks of hoof and mouth disease are detrimental not only to meat exports but to the sale of other agribusiness products, besides reducing the number of jobs in the livestock sector.
“The fight against hoof and mouth disease is very important on the world stage. The meat production chain in Brazil employs a lot of people. Therefore, the disease has a very strong impact from the social point of view,” Caetano explained.
He informed that the results of an examination of a suspected case of hoof and mouth disease in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul proved negative.
The Minister of Agriculture appealed to the newly inaugurated mayors to commit themselves to strive to end hoof and mouth disease in Brazil. The livestock sector employs 8 million people in the country.
President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is also involved in the campaign to eliminate hoof and mouth disease.
He recently made an appeal to all the presidents of South American countries to endeavor to wipe out the disease on the South American continent by 2009.
Translation: David Silberstein