Sheep farmers to protest over EID tagging in Dublin today

A protest in opposition to the mandatory introduction of electronic identification (EID) tagging for all sheep is being held by the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association (ICSA) today, Monday, May 14.

ICSA sheep chairman John Brooks has said that members of the ICSA Sheep Committee wish to highlight the mounting anger of sheep farmers against this unnecessary move.

The protest will take place at the Department of Agriculture, Kildare Street, Dublin, and will start at 12:30pm.

Commenting, Brooks said: “The introduction of mandatory EID tagging will cost sheep farmers €2.5 million per year.

It has been done without warning or consultation at the behest of processors – which are the only ones who will benefit.

“It is unacceptable that sheep farmers should bear all the cost,” the chairman stressed.

In addition, Brooks said: “ICSA is also deeply concerned about the chaotic rollout of the Clean Livestock Policy (CLP) for sheep. We are demanding an immediate review of the implementation of the policy.”

Previously, when the Department of Agriculture first announced the move, Brooks described it as “completely over the top”.

He said at the time: “The sheep farmer will ultimately have to bear all the costs associated and there will be no extra traceability post slaughter, certainly not individual carcass traceability.

“Foisting this on farmers with the reasoning that it’s a market requirement simply does not ring true,” he said.