Chemist in court for oversupplying Galway farm with antibiotics

A pharmacist based in Crossmolina, Co. Mayo, has been brought before the courts for oversupplying a farm in Co. Galway with antibiotics, according to the Mayo News.

It is alleged that one of the largest farms in Connacht was “grossly oversupplied” with antibiotics and other prescription-only medication (POM), Castlebar District Court heard recently.

Daragh Quinn – of Quinn’s Chemist on Bridge Street in Crossmolina – admitted to 34 breaches of EU regulations regarding animal remedies.

Quinn was reportedly in breach of regulations regarding the supply of animal remedies without a valid prescription and the false endorsement of a prescription or document.

Antibiotics were supplied to Richard Bourns of Lisbeg Farms in Eyrecourt, Co. Galway, according to the Mayo News. It is believed to be one of the biggest farms in Connacht, comprising of almost 1,000 head of cattle and 2,500 sheep.

During an inspection of Lisbeg Farms in September 2015, officials from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine found large amounts of antibiotics; they suspected that there was a “gross oversupply of antibiotics” on the farm, the Mayo News added.

Quinn’s Chemist was subsequently inspected; a comparison of Quinn’s files and the antibiotics found on the farm reportedly confirmed the officials’ suspicions.

It is alleged that between the start of 2015 and September 21, 2015, Quinn received just over €27,000 for prescribed antibiotics, POM and vaccines which did not require a prescription from Lisbeg Farms.

It was claimed that there was a “serious misuse” of antibiotics on the farm and that there seemed to be little examination of animals by vets.

Guilty plea

Despite Quinn admitting to the charges, he claimed he never sent POM without a prescription, the Mayo News reported.

Quinn’s chemist was reportedly inspected by department officials on a previous occasion and his practices were never queried before the incident involving Lisbeg Farms, it added.

The court also heard that Quinn no longer supplies POM to Bourns, the owner of Lisbeg Farms, and was phasing out of veterinary pharmacy. The case has been adjourned until Tuesday, September 12, in Ballina District Court.