Electronic sheep tagging to become mandatory - with one-off €50 support to help farmers
The mandatory extension of electronic identification to all sheep has been announced by the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed.
Under the new rules will require all sheep sold from October 1, 2018 onwards will have to be identified electronically.
The Minister added that he intends to introduce a one off support measure up to a maximum of €50 per keeper for the first purchase of EID tags.
Lambs under 12 months of age moving directly to slaughter from the holding of birth will be required to be identified with a single electronic tag.
All other sheep will require an EID tag set comprised of two tags – one conventional tag and a corresponding electronic tag. However a conventional tag and an EID bolus will be permitted also.
The Minister stated that “the simplified rules will provide a more robust sheep traceability system and will further support the development and sustainability of the sheep industry.
"The improved traceability system will assist in maintaining existing markets and in securing new international outlets for Irish sheep meat, in line with the development goals for the sheep industry, as detailed in the Food Wise 2025 strategy."
He added that “this measure will simplify the sheep tagging system and will significantly reduce the record keeping requirements for sheep farmers moving sheep to livestock marts, slaughter plants and export assembly centres”.