Public consultation now open to gather industry opinion on proposed legislation to eradicate BVD from Wales

30th Jun 2022

The potential legislation builds on the work of the Gwaredu BVD programme to continue the eradication of Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD) from Wales and to protect the gains made by the voluntary programme, which comes to an end this year with free Youngstock Screening and PI (Persistently Infected) Hunt funding ending on 31 December 2022.


Gwaredu BVD is an industry led programme which has offered free Youngstock Screening and PI Hunt funding to farmers in Wales since 2017. Over 9,000 out of the approximate 11,000 Welsh Cattle farms (83%)  in Wales are aware  of their BVD status and actively working towards disease eradication in Wales. This rate of uptake proves the industry’s overall desire to eradicate BVD from the national herd. Legislation will help ensure the remaining 17% participate preventing reinfection of clean herds.


Should legislation be passed, it means Wales will join Scotland and Ireland in working towards BVD freedom. Eradicating BVD from Welsh cattle farms will improve the health, welfare and productivity on individual farms and improve the reputation of Welsh farming globally.


Minister for Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths said:

“I would urge cattle keepers and all those with an interest in the dairy and beef industries to take part in this consultation.  We already have a very high take up in the voluntary BVD scheme in Wales, and the next step to completely eradicate this disease here is to consider making the scheme compulsory.

As a result of the high take up of the voluntary scheme many cattle keepers will be familiar with the requirements of testing.

Eradicating the disease will improve animal health and welfare and improve productivity on the farm.” 


John Griffiths, Gwaredu BVD Programme Manager said:

“It would be great to see the gains we’ve made in partnership with the industry, unions and farmers across Wales be retained with legislation as the voluntary programme comes to an end.

Until we all unite and participate in eradicating BVD from our farms, the virus will continue to spread through biosecurity breaches, introducing infection into clean herds.

We encourage any farmer who hasn’t already taken advantage of free testing and PI Hunt funding to do so before the end of the year. Talk to your vet about BVD testing before it’s too late.”


Gwaredu BVD will be holding a briefing webinar on 6 July, 2022. There will be an opportunity for vets and farmers to ask questions and discuss the proposed legislation. Registration will be available on the Gwaredu BVD website shortly.


For more information on the proposed legislation go to The Welsh Government are seeking views on the proposed legislation until 25 August, 2022.