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Schemes to Control FMD and Brucellosis

  • 01 Jun 2019
  • 4 min read

Cabinet announced a special scheme for control of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and Brucellosis.

  • The entire cost of the scheme is to be borne out by the Central Government.
  • The scheme includes vaccination coverage to 30 crore bovines, 20 crore sheep or goat, and 10 million pigs.
  • Brucellosis control program shall extend to cover 100% vaccination coverage of 3.6 crore female calves.

About Foot and Mouth Disease and Brucellosis

Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is a severe, highly contagious viral disease of livestock that has a significant economic impact.

  • The disease affects cattle, swine, sheep, goats and other cloven-hoofed ruminants.
  • FMD virus belongs to (risk group 4 as per World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)) Aphthovirus genus of the picornaviridae family.
  • FMD can spread when infected animals bring the virus into physical contact with susceptible animals.
    • Virus contaminated facilities, contaminated vehicles, raw or improperly cooked garbage containing infected meat or animal products can also spread the virus of FMD.
  • In rare cases, humans are also susceptible.


  • Brucellosis is a bacterial disease caused by various Brucella species, which mainly infect cattle, swine, goats, sheep and dogs.
  • Humans generally acquire the disease through direct contact with infected animals, by eating or drinking contaminated animal products, or by inhaling airborne agents.
  • The majority of cases are caused by ingesting unpasteurized milk or cheese from infected goats or sheep.
  • Person to person transmission is rare.
  • The disease causes flu-like symptoms, including fever, weakness, malaise and weight loss.

Threats of FMD and Brucellosis

  • National FMD zero surveillance has estimated that 21% of cattle and buffalo did experience in recent past FMD virus infection.
  • Brucellosis is an uncontrolled serious public health problem in many developing countries including India.
  • Brucellosis in India is yet a very common but often neglected disease.

Economic Impact of Foot and Mouth disease and Brucellosis: Both the diseases have a direct negative impact on the trade of milk and other livestock products.

  • As per the estimates by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR),
    • Direct loss due to milk and meat could amount to Rs 20,000 crore per annum due to FMD.
    • Indirect losses due to reduced work capacity, abortions, subsequent infertility and sterility (that account for the reduced milk production subsequently).

India’s Livestock Sector

  • India’s livestock sector is one of the largest in the world.
  • Livestock contributed to 4% of the GDP and 26% of the agricultural GDP during 2010- 11.
  • India ranks first among the world’s milk-producing Nations.
  • The largest contributor to the National GDP among agricultural commodities.

Government Initiatives

  • FMD control program (FMDCP), initiated in 10th plan period and was extended to 11th and 12th plan period. Presently, it covers 351 districts in 13 states and 6 UTs.
  • The Ministry of Agriculture, Department (of Animal and Husbandry) had initiated ‘FMD Mukt Bharat’ under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) during 2016-17, a program to cover all the states which were not covered under the six-monthly vaccination scheme.
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