Department of Agriculture TVI budget up €2.8 million this year

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s budget for temporary veterinary inspectors (TVIs) has been increased by €2.8 million for 2019, according to Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed.

The budget for this year will amount to €16.8 million as a result of the increase.

The minister made a statement in the Dáil last week in response to a parliamentary question from independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice who asked the amount spent on the veterinary public health inspection service on an annual basis and the way in which this changed in the past three years.

In his reply, Minister Creed said:

“The cost of providing the Veterinary Public Health Inspection Service in Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine approved meat establishments, net of fees paid by the Food Business Operators, for 2016, 2017 and 2018 was €11.8 million, €13.3 million and €14 million respectively.”

The minister noted that one of the main elements of the Veterinary Public Health Inspection Service cost relates to the provision of ante-mortem and post-mortem inspection “by temporary veterinary inspectors whose services are used on a contract basis for inspection in slaughter plants”.

“The budget for temporary veterinary inspectors has been increased by €2.8 million for 2019,” Minister Creed said.

The minister added that the increase in inspection costs over the three-year period is due to higher bovine slaughter numbers and a requirement for allocation of additional resources in some USDA-approved plants.

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