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Written Answers - Animal Diseases

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 755 No. 1

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 195.  Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan  asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney  the extent to which the full requirement in respect of laboratory facilities and testing remains available or is being made available to facilitate early identification of animal disease in respect of the bovine, equine and pig industries; if all samples are tested here; the extent to which any such tests are referred overseas; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7457/12]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney While the Department’s laboratory facilities at Backweston have the capability to deal with the bulk of analytical requirements, certain elements (testing for exotic viruses etc) are referred to other national and international laboratory service providers. It is envisaged that the need for such referrals will continue to diminish, as the Department’s laboratories continue to introduce and extend the range of analytical methods and technologies available within the laboratories.

The Regional Veterinary Laboratory network is in close contact with local private veterinary practitioners and local farming interests and maintains a close scrutiny of the level of disease occurring in farmed animal species. The Irish Equine Centre provides most of the laboratory testing capacity for the equine industry with the Department laboratories providing additional tests for export certification. An annual report is prepared and published indicating the results of such disease surveillance activities on an all island basis. The most recent disease surveillance report is for 2010 and can be obtained at

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