Foot and Mouth Disease: The 1967 outbreak and its aftermath
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In 1967–68 Britain experienced the worst foot and mouth disease (FMD) epidemic of the twentieth century. Attributed to pig swill containing infected Argentine lamb, 2,228 outbreaks were recorded during a nine-month period, resulting in the slaughter of nearly 450,000 animals, statistics only surpassed by the 2001 FMD epidemic. Lord Soulsby led the discussion among veterinarians, virologists, academics and farmers. The edited, annotated and illustrated transcript considers MAFF’s State Veterinary Service procedures and organization and the subsequent investigations for the 1968 Northumberland Committee, with some comparisons with the 2001 outbreak; the contribution of the Animal Virus Research Institute and the International Vaccine Bank for FMD at Pirbright, Surrey; the hardship endured by the farmers during the outbreak; and political aspects of the historic slaughter policy and the debate over vaccination, both in Westminster and in Europe. Reynolds L A, Tansey E M. (eds) (2003) Foot and Mouth Disease: The 1967 outbreak and its aftermath, Wellcome Witnesses to Twentieth Century Medicine, vol. 18. London: Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine at UCL.