Ireland has been earmarked for an official audit on its compliance with EU laws on the transport of unweaned calves this year. Italy and Spain will also be audited on the same issue.

The audit will “verify member states’ compliance with the applicable EU legislation governing the welfare of unweaned calves during transport and the implementation of official controls thereon,” the European Commission has said.

The audit is aimed at producing an “overview of intra-EU transport of calves”.

This year Ireland will also be audited on sustainable use of pesticides laws, including its compliance with EU law on the authorisation, marketing and use of plant protection products and pesticide residues.

There will also be an audit in Northern Ireland on chemical safety under the Northern Ireland Protocol.

“This will include the assessment of the planned border control posts in UK-NI, verification of implementation of official controls on imports of animals and goods in the border control posts, and application of other EU legislation in the region,” the Commission said.