The European Union approved a plan to destroy millions of British cattle to stamp out "mad cow disease" and restore public trust in beef. After almost 40 hours of talks in Luxembourg, EU farm ministers agreed that Britain and the union would split 30-70 the huge cost of compensating farmers for lost livestock. But British Agriculture Minister Douglas Hogg rejected the measures, apparently because the EU refused to set a date when a ban on British beef would be lifted. Under the plan, Britain would destroy about 15,000 older cattle every week over six years, a total of 4.7 million animals. The crisis erupted after "mad cow disease" among British cattle was linked to a deadly human brain disorder.