The ICSA believes that BVD regulations need to be amended to ensure full testing of all imported stock.
The farm organisation’s animal health & welfare chairman, Hugh Farrell, said that farmers have complied “assiduously” with current BVD testing requirements, adding that “every calf born in Ireland is required to be BVD tested”.
“Their efforts are reflected in the fact that we have gone from 0.77% positives in 2013 to 0.04% positives so far in 2019.” he added.
He said that Ireland needs to get to a position as soon as possible where annual compulsory testing is no longer necessary for the herds which have never had a positive BVD calf.
“However, at this point, we need to be careful about letting BVD in the back door.” he warned.
“It doesn’t make sense that all Irish-born calves have to be done, even in herds with a long history of being BVD-free, while cattle can come in from abroad and only have to be tested if they are being sold to another herd,” Farrell concluded.