The ICMSA have made specific proposals on reactor removals as "eradication must be a priority".
Discussing the TB situation, Lorcan McCabe, Deputy President of ICMSA, said that farmers have been testing for TB for the last 70 years and are anxious to make progress on achieving eradication.
“We have been told at the Forum that under the existing programme it is predicted that we won’t achieve eradication for another 70 years.”
“We have to look at measures that will eradicate the disease sooner," he said.
He continued to say that their position is very clear and that if the new measures will help the TB situation, then farmers will certainly consider such proposals “provided that farmer concerns are taken on board and that those impacted by the changes are treated fairly and honestly by the Department.”
Mr McCabe continued “We’re going to engage in a way that helps eradicate the disease and, to that end, we’ve made a number of proposals, specifically around reactor removals. We also want the forum to meet more regularly to monitor closely, the results of the new drive and adjust accordingly," said the ICMSA Deputy President.
"Not all measures should be at the farmer level, we must see progress made in controlling TB in the wildlife population, this includes badger and deer.
At EU level, the Commission, through its new animal health law are proposing that all animals with no TB test in the last 6 months must complete a pre-movement test prior to movement into another herd.
“ICMSA vehemently oppose this suggestion said McCabe “This blanket rule will not reduce the incidence of TB, will simply add cost and additional workload on farmers, and will, if passed, come into force in 2021.
We call on Minister Creed and our MEPS to reject this proposal and allow Ireland to deal with its TB programme in a pragmatic and sensible way”, he concluded.
Image source: ICMSA\website