Farmers could be spared the cost of new Johne's eradication plans
It is proposed that milk processors and the Department of Agriculture will cover, in part or fully, the costs of a new Johne's Eradication Programme proposed for the dairy sector.
The new disease eradication scheme is set to be launched to prevent the dairy industry from a 'BSE-style' disaster hitting the €1.7bn sales of annual infant milk formula.
There is a growing body of data linking Johne's with the debilitating Crohn's disease in humans, as the spread of Johne's in national cattle herds continues to rise.
Veterinary experts believe that up to 20pc of Irish herds - in both beef and dairy - are carrying the disease. Globally, it may be closer to 50pc in intensive dairy regions.
On farm visit
Among the key outcomes of the consultation process for the new programme, FarmIreland.ie has learned, is a proposed herd health monitoring visit, conducted by a trained veterinary practitioner, local to the farm.
The proposed visit would incorporate elements, such as general calf health management and farm biosecurity.
It is proposed that Animal Health Ireland will be responsible for the initial design of the proposed herd health monitoring visit, working through the Technical Working Groups for Johne’s, CalfCare and Biosecurity.