Ray Doyle, ICOS livestock and environment services executive, has moved to dispel any rumours that new TB regulations being introduced on 1 February 2023 will devalue cows traded through marts.
The new TB rules will see the introduction of pre- or post-movement testing and possible herd restrictions where cows and males over 36 months of age are moving from farm to farm or through a mart sale and have not been tested in the last six months.
Some farmers believe that they need to test cows prior to movement or face a lower value.
Doyle says this is untrue: “There is no new mandatory requirement to pre-movement test any animal being presented for sale in the mart.
“There has been widespread confusion since TB letters were circulated to farmers. The reality is that in the region of 80% to 85% of cows traded in marts are purchased by buyers operating as controlled finishing units (CFUs). These CFUs already operate under strict TB regulations.
“The potential for a post-movement test will be irrelevant for such buyers and farmers do not need to have cull cows pre-movement tested within six months.”