Farm Ireland

Friday 23 March 2018

IFA slams new certificate for slaughter-bound stock

Martin Ryan

A new system of farmer certification on all animals being sold for slaughter is to be introduced by the Department of Agriculture, one which has been criticised by the IFA.

A separate Food Chain Information (Cattle 1) certificate will need to be completed at point of sale for each animal being sold. Together with the animal ID card (blue card), this must accompany the animal to the factory.

The farmer will be required to certify the herd heath status, herd management and husbandry for each animal. The condition of the animal at time of transport will also have to be certified by the haulier.

The requirement has been rejected by the IFA, which has advised the Department that another layer of bureaucracy on livestock farmers will not be accepted.

They have informed the minister's office that, if the additional certification has to be introduced, then the completion of one certificate to cover all animals sold from an individual holding during the year should be sufficient.

The document, a copy of which has been seen by the Farming Independent, will require the farmer to certify that the animals have been tagged correctly, to guarantee the health status of the animal and herd or that no prohibited substances have been fed to it which might render the carcass unfit for human consumption.

In addition, the farmer must ensure that the withdrawal period of any administered treatments has been observed, and that the animal was healthy when it left the farm.

The certificate will be required to show the date and time the animal was loaded at the farm.

Also Read

It will also be a requirement for the haulier to be registered with the Department and for the haulier to complete each certificate with their name, registration of vehicle and haulier registration number, and to verify that the animal was in good condition leaving the farm.

The IFA is opposed to the introduction of the new Department certificates.

"What is the situation if a farmer does not know that feed, which they had purchased in good faith, was contaminated as happened in the dioxin case with pigs?" one IFA official asked.

"Farmers would be well advised to add to the certificate that the information was to the best of their knowledge at the time of completion."

Irish Independent