Knackeries around the country close their gates

Elaine Keogh

Knackeries around the country have closed their gates this morning according to the chairperson of the Animal Collectors Association, Michael McKeever.

Mr McKeever, who has a knackery in county Louth, said this morning that knackeries are working at a loss.

He said that funding from the Department of Agriculture was reduced by over 80pc in 2009. 

Since then additional costs have been passed onto farmers for the collection of their animals but now the Animal Collectors Association says it is not viable for the knackeries to continue running at a loss.

It is understood that the association has been in talks with the Department of Agriculture but these have broken down.

However Mr McKeever confirmed this morning that the decision has been taken to close the gates on the 40 or so knackeries around the country.

Louth deputy Declan Breathnach said, “this is part of an ongoing saga particularly with family run knackeries who are making losses.”

“The Minister for Agriculture is aware of the situation and I am asking him to intervene before this situation escalates.”

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Deputy Breathnach said that “The sustainability of knackeries is in question. They have been trying to sustain an operation that is unsustainable without some form of support.”

Deputy Breathnach said that “there is now an issue of health and safety and danger of spread of disease where animals are left uncollected.”

The Department said it has been in discussion the Animal Collector’s Association (ACA) in the last weeks, in relation to the operations of knackeries and the Fallen Animal Scheme. Arising from the discussions, the Department said it has made proposals that would further enhance the supports it gives to the important work that knackeries undertake within the agri-sector. 

The Department seeks to continue our discussions with ACA with a view to resolving this issue.

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