THE BSE RISK: What the Cabinet will be eating

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John Major, Prime Minister: "Will of course continue to eat beef and serve it to his guests".

And his children? "No reason to suppose that wouldn't be the case. But his children are young adults so the question doesn't really apply." (Press Secretary)

Stephen Dorrell, Secretary of State for Health: "I eat beef and my young children are eating beef."

Michael Portillo, Secretary of State for Defence: "My family will continue to eat beef as part of a balanced diet."

Virginia Bottomley, Heritage Secretary: Said she had visited her local McDonald's in Old Kent Road yesterday with her husband and had eaten a beefburger.

John Gummer, Secretary of State for the Environment: "Beef will still be served. Myself and my family will continue to eat beef."

Gillian Shephard, Secretary of State for Education and Employment: "Mrs Shephard's view is that the Chief Medical Officer said he will continue to eat beef as part of a balanced diet and so will she."

Roger Freeman, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster: "It would be a personal matter for the minister concerned." (Press Secretary)

Ian Lang, President of the Board of Trade and Secretary of State for Trade and Industry: "I will continue to eat beef."

Viscount Cranborne, Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Lords: "Yes, I am still eating beef, it is still being served and it is still part of my varied diet."

Sir George Young, Secretary of State for Transport: "These are obviously personal matters that we won't be dealing with from the department's point of view." (A spokesman)

Peter Lilley, Secretary of State for Social Security: "I haven't been able to have a word with him." (A spokeswoman)

Michael Forsyth, Secretary of State for Scotland: "He is not available for comment. He is dealing with Dunblane."

Sir Patrick Mayhew, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland: "The Secretary of State and his family continue to eat beef."

William Waldegrave, Chief Secretary to the Treasury: "You are not the first person to ask this question today. He's been in meetings all day. I don't think we are likely to get an answer now." (A spokesman)