‘New herd number applications take approximately 3 weeks to process’

It currently takes approximately three weeks to process new herd number applications, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, said.

“Under normal circumstances, the average waiting period from the time of receipt of the application to the allocation of a herd number is approximately three weeks,” he added.

Minister Creed was responding to a recent parliamentary question from Fine Gael TD Brendan Griffin.

The length of time required to process an individual application is contingent on a number of factors, Minister Creed said.

These factors include the timely response of the applicant in providing the required documentation and proof that the applicant is entitled to use the lands that are the subject of the herd number application, he added.

Herd or flock number

Introduced by Minister Creed’s department, herd or flock numbers aim to allow for the easy identification of both cattle herds and sheep flocks; it is a legal requirement to hold a herd or flock number if a person owns livestock in Ireland.

Anyone over the age of 18, who meets the requirements listed from the Regional Veterinary Office network, can apply for a herd/flock number to keep either cattle or sheep.

These criteria ensure that disease is both controlled and prevented from spreading on cattle and sheep farms. How to apply for a herd or flock number

The conditions state that the herd/flock must be maintained separately without intermixing or being on the same holding as other herds/flocks.

The requirements also state that the new herd/flock must be managed as an independent unit. An applicant for a herd/flock must exclusively occupy a defined holding.

Applications for a herd/flock number must also guarantee that the perimeter fencing around the designated land is stock-proof to prevent direct contact with livestock on neighbouring farms.

People interested in applying for a herd/flock number are advised to contact their local Teagasc advisory office or agricultural consultant for guidance on the best way to apply.