The Chinese government will offer free bird flu and foot-and-mouth vaccines to farmers, according to Friday's Farmers' Daily.
The Ministry of Finance has decided to allocate 800 million yuan (about US$100 million) from the central finance budget, and more than 900 million yuan (about US$112 million) from local governments to pay for the vaccine.
The Ministry of Agriculture said that farmers can get the vaccine free of charge providing that they will use the vaccine properly according to the ministry's latest immunization regulations.
Strengthening immunity in spring is the best way to prevent diseases, said the Ministry of Agriculture. To regulate immunization procedures, the ministry has just issued an immunity program against some serious epidemics like bird flu and foot-and-mouth disease.
The ministry urged local governments to prepare thoroughly for the immunity when migratory birds fly north in the mid April. Relevant immunity technical training will also be stepped up in local areas.
(Xinhua News Agency March 25, 2006)