How to do this exercise
I suggest that you use the print button at the bottom of the page and do the exercise offline – this is a much better exercise.
I do not suggest that you try and do this as a timed exercise. It is a long and complex text. Train your skills on it.
Get some help before you start
You might want to try the tutorial first if you haven’t already read it.Get the advice first
- you should concentrate on the stem of the questions (1-5) and not the letters (A-H) when you are scanning)
- you should identify the right part of the text first
- the questions follow the order of the text
Complete each sentence with the correct letter A-H
1. The tourism industry in the UK suffered financially
2. There was a ban on burials of animals in quicklime
3. The first animal became infected
4. The policy of transporting dead animals was challenged in the courts
5. A policy of vaccination was not introduced
A. because a farmer used untreated waste as feed.
B. because the number of cases fell between May and September.
C. because footpaths were closed due to the foot and mouth outbreak.
D. because it also affected animals that were not affected by the disease.
E. because it might reduce the profits of farmers.
F. because a similar programme had worked well in The Netherlands.
G. because of the adoption of European legislation in the UK.
H. because many abattoirs were closed
The foot and mouth crisis
One of the worst crises in agriculture in the United Kingdom was caused by the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in 2001 caused a crisis in British agriculture. The depth of the crisis can be judged by the fact that there were no fewer than 2,000 cases of the disease and that over 10 million sheep and cattle were killed in the attempt to halt the disease. The disease primarily the countryside and took root in many regions with Cumbria the worst affected area of the country, with 843 cases. 1.There was also a profound effect on tourism industry due to the closure of public rights of way across land so as to prevent the spread the disease. Estimates vary as to the overall cost of the crisis to the UK economy, but it is thought that the final figure was in the region of £8 billion.
The 2001 crisis, serious as it was, was by no means the first outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the United Kingdom. It was, however, notable for the way it affected the whole country. The last outbreak in 1967 had been confined to a relatively small area and The Northumberland report issued by the government after that outbreak recommended that speed was of the essence in dealing with any future outbreak of the disease. Priority should be given to the speedy identification of infected animals and those animals should be slaughtered on the spot within 24 hours, with their carcasses buried in quicklime. These recommendations were no longer in effect by 2001, partly thanks to changes brought about by farming practice and the closure of many local abattoirs which meant that animals had to be transported greater distances. More particularly, Britain’s accession to the European Union had meant that by 1985 new European Union legislation was in effect in the UK. This amended the rules on the treatment of foot-and-mouth in a directive that required confirmation of any diagnosis by laboratory tests and prohibited farm burials and the use of quicklime.
The disease was first detected on a pig at an abattoir in Essex on 19 February 2001 and it was found to have spread to several other pigs in the local area. However, four days later another case was confirmed on a farm in Heddon-on-the-Wall, Northumberland, from where the pig in the first case had come and this farm was later confirmed as the source of the outbreak, the immediate cause being that the farmer had been feeding his pigs “untreated waste”. At this stage, the European Union imposed a worldwide ban on all British exports of livestock, meat and animal products. And by the end of the beginning of March, the disease had spread to many of the heavily agricultural regions of the UK, including, Devon, north Wales, Cornwall, southern Scotland and the Lake District. Following European policy, the Ministry for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF) ruled that not only infected animals were to be slaughtered but, in what came to be known as “contiguous cull” any sheep, cow or pig within three kilometres of known cases would be slaughtered too.
The carcasses of the animals that were slaughtered had to be taken to a special facility in Widnes, in the north west of England, with the unfortunate result that the corpses of infected animals were transported through areas that previously had been disease free. This policy was challenged legally on two fronts: that pigs and cows were not transmitters of the disease and that the authorities had no right to slaughter uninfected animals that had not been directly exposed to the disease. The MAFF immediately amended their ruling so that only uninfected sheep were affected.
Professor King, an expert in the transmission of disease, announced that the foot-and-mouth outbreak was “totally under control” in April. This was false confidence, however, as the outbreak continued with around 5 cases a day being reported from May to September. This was down from the peak of 50 cases a day in March, but the continuation of the disease necessitated a series of measures to prevent its further spread. These included a complete ban on the movement of livestock and the sale of British pigs, sheep and cattle and severe restrictions on the movement of humans near infected areas. This included closing vast tracts of the countryside to walkers and tourists and ensuring that the footwear of people with access to farmyards and fields was disinfected so that the disease was not spread. Most of all though, efforts concentrated on the controlled culling of animals and the burning of their remains. With approximately 90,000 animals being destroyed on a weekly basis, the army was called in to assist the MAFF officials who were unable to cope with slaughter on such an unparalleled scale.
It was not until late September that The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs cleared the last area to be infected, although restrictions on livestock movement continued well into 2002. When its inquest began into the outbreak, most attention focussed on the refusal of MAFF to use a vaccine – not least because vaccination had rapidly ended a simultaneous outbreak in The Netherlands. This policy had been implemented under pressure from farmers’ unions who were concerned that any vaccination programme would cost them dearly as it would prevent any future export of British meat. However, the net loss to the farming industry of approximately £594 million was dwarfed by the loss to the tourism industry and, on the basis that in future it would economically prudent to end any outbreak as quickly as possible, current policy has been amended to allow for vaccination as well as culling.