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ICSA urges department to be ‘flexible’ on sheep farm inspections

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Navy is being called for greater flexibility over inspections of sheep farms during the lambing season by the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association ( CAHI).

The organization pointed to the potential for animal welfare issues to arise during the months of the busy lambing season if sheep have to move around the farm frequently for inspection.

Association Sheep Chairman Sean McNamara said this morning (Wednesday Jan 5): “There are welfare issues when it comes to moving heavy or recently lambed ewes.

“They don’t need to be under unnecessary stress.

“As sheep farmers, we are on duty 24 hours a day at this time of year. Inspections can build up pressure and unless absolutely necessary should be done during the quieter months,” McNamara explained.

The ICSA sheep chair also took the opportunity to warn dog owners “not to get complacent” when it comes to knowing where their dogs are at all times, especially at this time of year.

“Every lambing season we see the same dog carnage across the country. Any dog ​​can wreak havoc on the cattle if allowed to roam free,” he said .

“I can’t stress enough how important it is for dog owners to be extra vigilant, especially at this time of year.

“Attacks on sheep and lambs are completely preventable with responsible dog ownership,” McNamara concluded.

ICSA blasts EU over red meat

In other ICSA-related news, the farm organization has sharply criticized a new European Commission food promotion policy that links red meat to cancer risks.

The Commission has this year approved a budget of €186 million to promote EU agri-food products inside and outside the Union.

This includes encouraging consumers to eat more plant-based diets with less red and processed meat.

ICSA President Dermot Kelleher called the EU policy a “deliberate distortion of real research”.

“The EU appears to blame red meat consumption for the increased risk of cancer, while the report by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) on behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO) does not found that a marginal increased risk in the case of treaty meats. He could not find solid evidence regarding unprocessed red meats,” Kelleher said.

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