(Extraído de The Telegraph)
MEPs want to spend millions of pounds of tax payers’ money on homeopathy for cows.
Homeopathy is very low dosages of a bacterium to cure an infection and is common to treat condition like mastitis in dairy cattle Photo: REX
By Louise Gray, Environment Correspondent
30 Aug 2011
The European Agriculture Committee approved 2 million euros (£1.7 million) for research into homeopathic medicines or ‘phytotherapy’ for farm animals.
Tory MEPs condemned the decision as “sheer madness”.
Homeopathy is very low dosages of a bacterium to cure an infection and is common to treat condition like mastitis in dairy cattle. Phytotherapy refers to medicines made out of herbs or plants to treat contions like lameness or animal flu.
Richard Ashworth, Conservative MEP for the South East and spokesman on agriculture and rural affairs, labelled the scheme outrageous and an insult to taxpayers.
He pointed out that the British Veterinary Association will not endorse homeopathic medicine.
"Spending such a huge sum of public money on something so marginal and left-field would be bad at the best of times.
"When we are in the middle of an economic crisis, when governments everywhere are taking severe "When we are in the middle of an economic crisis, when governments everywhere are taking severe austerity measures just to balance the books, to waste millions on highly questionable new-age remedies for cows and sheep is sheer madness,” he said.
But Harvey Locke, President of the BVA, admitted there was no evidence homeopathic treatments work, but he welcomed money for research.
“Millions of Euros have already been spent on trying to prove the scientific efficacy of homeopathic medicines. To date we have not seen any data to prove they can be effective in the treatment of bacterial infections,” he said.
“Whilst it is unlikely that €2 million will be able to determine whether or not there is a basis for claiming homeopathic products can work, we welcome European investment in veterinary research and hope that the results of the pilot will be useful.”
The draft budget now has to be approved by the budget committee and voted on by the European Parliament before the money can be spent.
There has been a great deal of concern recently about the high use of anti-biotics on factory farms. It is feared that dangerous bacteria like MRSA are building up resistance to anti-biotics in the livestock industry and are then being passed into human living areas or even the food chain where it can be dangerous.
Supporters of homeopathic remedies, such as the Soil Association, argue that the system has been shown to be effective in keeping animals healthy and would cut the growing use of anti-biotics.