Min Age For BSE Testing Increases To 72 Months

IRELAND - The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney, has confirmed that the minimum age for BSE testing of healthy cattle slaughtered for human consumption will be increased to 72 months from 1 July.
calendar icon 23 June 2011
clock icon 1 minute read

Welcoming the EU Commission's notification, the Minister said that this higher age for testing will deliver very significant savings to farmers who currently have to pay for the testing of healthy cattle over 48 months. Minister Coveney estimates that the number of cattle to be tested will fall by about 85,000 a year and will result in annual savings of more than 1.7m Euro in testing costs borne by farmers.

The Minister said: "This latest increase in the age for BSE testing of healthy slaughter cattle acknowledges the significant fall in the number of BSE cases occurring in Ireland since 2003."

The Minister added that strict controls as specified in the relevant EU legislation will continue to apply in order to protect the health of consumers.

"Excellent progress continues to be made in the area of marketing Irish beef abroad. I am committed in my efforts to ensure that Irish beef continues to gain access to as many markets worldwide as possible," the Minister said.

Concluding the Minister said: "The existing requirement to BSE test all cattle presented for emergency slaughter and all fallen animals over 48 months of age will continue."

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