For those of you that haven’t already seen it, here is the link to the TBSPG Interim Report. The TB Strategic Partnership Group (TBSPG) is an independent high level advisory group which has been tasked by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development with developing a strategy and implementation action plan to effect a progressive and sustained reduction of TB in the cattle population here, with a view to eventual eradication. The Group is chaired by Mr Sean Hogan and is made up of five independent industry and stakeholder representatives plus two DARD ex-officio members. The TBSPG was due to have produced its final report by now but has requested, and been granted, an additional extension on its deadline to submit its TB eradication strategy and implementation action plan. The group wishes to secure input from external consultants, in particular to provide independent analysis of possible options and recommendations. The acquisition of the necessary consultancy advice requires advertisement at European level and the observation of specified time periods in the procurement process. This will mean that the consultants appointed will now be unlikely to complete their work before late May 2016.