Cattle stolen in west Cork
A farmer in the Skibbereen area found out today that some of his cattle had been stolen overnight.

Thirteen Friesian weanling bullocks were reported stolen from a farm near Skibbereen overnight.

Farmer Martin Harte went to check on weanlings in a rented shed this Thursday morning to find a number missing.

"Whoever took them knew their stock well. Out of a group of 30 Friesians, they took the best. There were a dozen Charolais weanlings too and they were left behind," he said.

The weanlings, weighing between 250kg and 300kg, were taken since Wednesday night.

While there are a large number of Friesian weanlings in the west Cork area, Martin said: "They had their backs and tails clipped recently when I treated them for lice so that may help people notice them."

Gardai are investigating the theft.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Skibbereen Garda Station on 028 23088.

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Agri-jobs: beef stockperson and commercial manager
Check out all the latest work positions available in the agri industry

Commercial manager

Connon General Merchants in Ballymena, Co Antrim are seeking a commercial manager for their retail store supplying feed to dairy, beef and sheep customers. The successful candidate will be responsible for developing and implementing the company’s annual strategic plan.

Candidates ideally will have six-plus years’ experience in a senior management role and a third level qualification in business or agricultural science.

For more information, you can click here.

Calf rearer

A dairy and beef enterprise near Portlaoise is seeking a general farm worker to carry out milking, feeding, calf rearing and tractor work. There are 130 dairy cows on the farm and the successful candidate must have experience milking and a full drivers licence.

Previous experience in handling calves would be an advantage.

For more information click here.

Beef stockperson

A stockperson is required on a suckler/beef farm in west Clare. There is 80 head of cattle on the farm and potential applicants must be self-starters, capable of operating on their own.

Experience in calving cows and basic husbandry skills are required.

For more information you can click here.

Dairy farm manager

A 160-crossbred cow dairy farm in Carraigaline, Co Cork requires a farm manager. The manager will have full responsibility for grassland and herd management with all machinery and heifer rearing contracted out.

There is an option for stock build within herd and future joint venture for the right candidate but positive attitude and honesty are crucial.

For more information click here.

Tractor driver

A tractor driver is required for a farm in Co Laois. The successful candidate must be able to carry out all types of farm work.

For more information click here.

New year recruitment for Brexit vets
Despite An Taoiseach’s commitment to recruit new vets and customs officials in July, the Department has yet to commence the recruitment drive.

The Department of Agriculture has confirmed that it will be the new year before more vets are recruited to deal with the customs and veterinary issues that could arise in the wake of Brexit.

An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar gave a commitment in July this year that up to 1,000 additional customs officials and vets would be recruited by 2021 to handle any fallout from Brexit.

We will continue to prepare for a no-deal [Brexit]

It was understood that up to 300 vets would be recruited as part of the 1,000 positions outlined by An Taoiseach.

While he admitted at the time that that it would not be “possible to have 1,000 people in place” in the event of a hard Brexit scenario by March 2019, he said that “we will make contingency arrangements in the event that might arise”.

No hard border

However, with the confirmation that a veterinary recruitment drive has yet to commence, there may be concerns that the Department is underprepared to cope with any implications from Brexit.

The Department stated that it was working under the so-called “central base” scenario.

“This envisages no hard border on the island of Ireland, a transition period to the end of 2020 and an EU-UK Free Trade Agreement from 1 January 2021, in accordance with stated UK commitments and red lines,” the Department stated.

“DAFM has sanction to commence recruitment of an additional compliment of staff in 2019 across a number of grades and disciplines, including the veterinary sphere.

“Provision has been made in this regard in the 2019 budget.”

Given that just roughly 80 vets qualify from UCD every year, it's also unclear where the additional 300 vets would be recruited from.

Brexit

While the current draft arrangement for Brexit outlines a transition period, it has yet to be agreed upon by the European Council.

The most worrying area of Brexit from an Irish perspective is trade practicalities between the north and south of Ireland.

In a statement, the European Commission outlined that the draft text “means that Northern Ireland will remain aligned to a limited set of EU rules that are indispensable for avoiding a hard border.”

These include:

  • Sanitary rules for veterinary controls ("SPS rules").
  • Rules on agricultural production/marketing.
  • However, the British prime minister has not ruled out the possibility of a hard Brexit scenario and told the House of Commons on Thursday 15 November that, “we will continue to prepare for a no-deal [Brexit].”

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    "Today, I have resigned as Brexit secretary. I cannot in good conscience support the terms proposed for our deal with the EU. Here is my letter to the PM explaining my reasons, and my enduring respect for her," Raab said in a tweet.

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