‘Putting heavily in-calf cows up cattle crush for Genomics inspections unnecessary’

The Department of Agriculture is currently carrying out inspections on the farms of applicants to the Beef Data and Genomics Programme.

However at last week’s meeting of Farmers Charter monitoring committee IFA National Livestock Chairman Henry Burns highlighted the problems with the current inspections.

According to Burns, the problems centre around the requirement to run heavily in-calf cows into a cattle crush for inspection.

He said this is creating unnecessary welfare problems on the ground and requested the Department to adopt a more practical and flexible approach.

Under the Terms and Conditions of the Beef Data and Genomics Programme, all those in the scheme may be subject to compliance checks annually. Inspections will be carried out on at least 5% of beneficiaries and the notice of inspection may be up to 14 days.

According to the Department of Agriculture, under the Beef Data and Genomics Programme, €32m has been paid out so far to 17,500 farmers.

Training

Teagasc was recently awarded the tender to complete the Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP) training course in 2016.

The course will be four hours in duration and will be totally focused on all aspects of the BDGP – interpretation of breeding reports, breeding targets, compliance, etc.

It is understood pilot courses will be run in February with the main courses starting in March.

Farmers will receive €166 on completion of this training course. Teagasc is advising farmers to keep an eye out and get it completed when you see it advertised locally.

This money will be paid by the training provider directly to the Programme applicant upon successful completion of the course.

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