Independent TD Carol Nolan has called on the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue to provide explicit guarantees that farmers will not be burdened with the requirement to finance additional statutory TB testing obligations or TB control programme requirements.
The Laois-Offaly TD was speaking after she met with concerned farmers who fear that proposals are being put in place to ensure that they will bear the cost of all TB testing above and beyond the single annual test that they already pay for:
“The farmers I am speaking to are well aware that the issue of additional payments for TB testing was deferred by The Financial Working Group of the TB Forum until February 2023. However, they are now rightly concerned that further payments will be demanded from them despite the fact that organisations like the IFA and the ICSA have categorically stated their opposition to any such move,” Deputy Nolan said.
“I support the IFA and indeed the ICSA in making the issue of additional payments beyond the once-a-year annual test a non-starter.”
“Farmers have always shown that they are willing to play their part in TB eradication and indeed to pay for the annual test. But to move beyond that and to impose additional statutory burdens in terms of costs will be resisted,” concluded Deputy Nolan.