BVD Removal Scheme to close next weekend

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The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs has confirmed that an incentivisation scheme aimed at the removal of animals persistently infected by BVD will close on 30 September 2017.

The scheme, which formed part of a £4 million package of support for local livestock farmers provided under EU Exceptional Adjustment Aid (EAA), opened in February 2017. As the funding available under the EAA package will terminate at the end of September, the Department urges herd keepers to make any outstanding claims for eligible animals to the Livestock and Meat Commission as soon as possible.

To be eligible for payment under this scheme, the death of the animal must be recorded on APHIS or MC1 stamped by DAERA by 30th September 2017. Claims must also be submitted to LMC within two weeks of the death of the animal being recorded.

The rate of financial assistance available is:

l £160 for a beef calf;

l £130 for a dairy heifer calf; and

l £50 for a dairy male calf.

To be eligible for payment herd keepers must have fully complied with the requirements of the BVD Eradication Scheme Order (Northern Ireland) 2016 and ensure that each animal meets the following criteria; i.e. that it has;

l notification of its birth recorded on APHIS in accordance with Regulation 6 of the Cattle Identification (notification of Birth, Deaths and Movements) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1999;

l tested positive for the presence of BVD virus;

l not been moved from the farm on which it was born;

l been humanely destroyed; and

l its death confirmed on APHIS within four weeks of receiving a positive BVD test result. An additional two weeks will be allowed where an applicant elects for repeat analysis of an initial positive result.

Only animals which meet these requirements on or after 1st February 2017 will be eligible for payment.

DAERA is keen to emphasise that herd keepers are responsible for ensuring the death of the animal is confirmed via APHIS-on-line or by MC1 submitted to DAERA. Herd keepers should not assume that the death will be recorded by the disposal agent or rendering plant.

The department adopts a zero-tolerance policy to fraud.