Reuters reports that new cases of livestock disease bluetongue have been confirmed in Cambridgeshire and Kent, prompting the Defra to expand the area in which it controls animal movements.
"This is obviously unwelcome news for the farming industry, however, given the nature of this disease and its means of spread, this is not entirely unexpected," Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer Fred Landeg said in a statement.
The new cases were near Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, and Ashford, Kent. The country's first ever case of bluetongue was reported in Suffolk on September 22.
Landeg confirmed an outbreak of the disease in the country on September 28 after several subsequent cases of the disease which quickly spread from Suffolk to neighbouring county Essex.
Defra said there were 41 confirmed premises affected by bluetongue, as of 4:30 pm on Tuesday. Control Zones have been put in place around these two new cases and the existing Protection Zone has been extended accordingly.
In a separate statement, NFU President Peter Kendall said: "It is obviously deeply disappointing to learn the disease has spread as far west as Peterborough and that the Protection Zone has moved further across the country."
"As an organisation we need to look carefully at the implications of this news, and will be consulting urgently with our members, because it will have a major financial impact on a huge number of livestock farmers, particularly those in the Midlands."
Well, that is certainly one way of putting it!