IFA’s National Animal Health Committee this week elected Pat Farrell from Kildare as Chairman, succeeding Bert Stewart in the role.
A suckler farmer from Co. Kildare, Pat previously served as IFA Environment Committee Chairman and as Kildare County Chairman.
Speaking about his priorities for the role, Pat said he will work with the Committee to:
- Re-establish the independence of the TB Live Valuation Scheme and ensure guideline prices accurately reflect the market value animals;
- Review the TB Eradication programme including all compensation schemes and controls to ensure the cost burden for farmers is reduced and the target of eradication is achieved;
- Ensure the Wildlife Control Programme is effectively implemented in all counties and continue to pursue the development of a National Deer Management Programme;
- Ensure the objective of BVD eradication by 2020 is achieved and ensure on-farm testing is discontinued at the earliest opportunity;
- Identify and have implemented, a sustainable and credible national Johne’s control programme that meets the objectives of farmers and co-ops;
- Pursue a favourable outcome in the new EU Veterinary Medicine Regulations for Irish farmers;
- Continue to engage with the Department of Agriculture towards developing appropriate use guidelines for antibiotic use on farms;
- Engage with all relevant parties to ensure farmers continue to have a competitive and efficient veterinary service in all regions of the country; and,
- Pursue the retention of the existing RVL infrastructure and enhancement of services to farmers
Pat Farrell paid tribute to the work of Bert Stewart as Animal Health Chairman over the last four years, which he said benefited all farmers. He wished Bert well for the future.