Farmers want funding for EID electronic tagging

The IFA is calling for farmers to be provided with adequate funding following the Department’s move to introduce compulsory bovine EID electronic tagging from next year.

IFA Animal Health Chairman Pat Farrell says compulsory bovine EID tagging adds over €2.5m in direct costs to suckler and dairy farmers for tags alone.

That’s before the purchase of readers is factored in.

Mr Farrell says that while there are management benefits for some large farms, these farms can and are already using EID.

The vast majority of suckler and dairy farms will only experience increased costs for tags and readers, while meat factories, factory feedlots, exporters, marts, Department of Agriculture inspectors and vets will accrue the benefits from compulsory EID, he said.

He also pointed out that compulsory Bovine EID is not an EU requirement– but a Department of Agriculture decision.

He also says ED does not enhance the cattle traceability systems already in place in Ireland.

EU legislation requires that all bovines are to be tagged within 20 days of birth and registered on the Department’s Animal Identification and Movement (AIM) database within seven days of tagging.

He said the AIM database — which records all bovine birth, movements and disposals — is already providing an accurate and comprehensive data detailing the origin, identity, movement and life history of all cattle born in or imported into the country without the need for compulsory EID.

The IFA claims the vast majority of benefits associated with EID tagging will not be experienced by the farmer.

Additionally, he said that farmers who have already purchased stocks of non-EID tags must be facilitated past the July 1st, 2022 deadline for its implementation.