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IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell has welcomed the updated TB testing protocol issued today by the Department of Agriculture.

 

Full details at www.ifa.ie/covid19.

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IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell says the Department of Agriculture changes to the TB programme which allow farmers with COVID19 concerns to defer tests without sanction, is an important first step in recognising the challenges faced by farmers. However, he said this will need to be kept under review and amended as the situation evolves.

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IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell said today’s resumption of Fallen Animal collections from farms is a huge relief to farmers who were unfairly used as pawns by the knackeries in their dispute with the Department of Agriculture.

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IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell said the knackery situation is at a critical stage and it requires urgent action by the Minister and his officials.

“Farmers cannot be left without a service. We need Minister Creed to step up and sort out the deadlock that exists,” he said.

The Department of Agriculture is legislatively bound to ensure an efficient and competitive infrastructure is available to all farmers. The current infrastructure, through the licensed knackeries, is failing to deliver this service.

“The scheme announced last night fails to reduce the costs of disposal for farmers and its voluntary nature doesn’t provide a guaranteed collection service for all farmers,” he said.

Pat Farrell said the Department of Agriculture has protected the interests of the three rendering plants and licensed knackeries at the expense of farmers.

The IFA Chairman set out two key principles for the Department of Agriculture to address: a reduction in collection charges and guarantee of collection.

“The Department of Agriculture has not addressed these issues.  The scheme must be revisited as a matter of urgency,” he said.

IFA Animal Health Chairman, Pat Farrell said the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed cannot allow a situation to arise where fallen animals are not being collected from farms.

He said IFA has highlighted the weaknesses with the current fallen animal collection service to the Department of Agriculture for a number of years.

“The Department of Agriculture is legislatively bound to ensure an efficient and competitive infrastructure is available to all farmers.  The current infrastructure, through the licensed knackeries, is failing to deliver this service.”

Since 2013, farmers have been exposed to continuous and unacceptable price increases and in some cases, knackeries refusing to collect certain animals.

He said the Department of Agriculture must provide all farmers with a guaranteed collection service, significantly below the exorbitant and unacceptable fees currently charged by some knackeries. These fees have increased again in the past number of weeks.

Pat Farrell said the Department of Agriculture must move as a matter of urgency to reduce the costs for farmers and ensure no fallen animals are left on farms.


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