‘Significant’ number of sheep and goat census forms returned

A significant number of sheep and goat census forms have already been returned, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has confirmed.

These returns were a mixture of post and online submissions, it added.

In mid-December, these forms were issued to all 44,900 registered flock keepers in the country.

Farmers are required to have the forms returned by January 31 if sending them by post; alternatively, an extended deadline of February 14 has been given for online returns.

The department confirmed to AgriLand that there were no delays issuing the forms and that it is not aware of any difficulties regarding their delivery.

Sunday, December 31, 2017, was selected as the date for the census by the department. Completion and return of the census is a legal obligation on keepers.

Meanwhile, the department also outlined that there are no plans at the moment to extend the original deadlines for receipt of the completed census forms.

Farmers have until January 31 to ensure that the completed forms are sent by post to Seefin Data Management, PO Box 17, An Post, Cahirdown, Listowel D.S.U, Co. Kerry.

The onus remains with the flock/herd keeper to make sure that the completed census forms being returned by post are received on time, the department added.

The only acceptable proof of postage is a registered post receipt in the case of dispute regarding postal returns. A postal certificate or express post receipt is not acceptable as proof of postage, it explained.

Failure to return the census on time may also impact on future payments from the department.