European fund for animal health research aims to tackle disease

ANIMAL health researchers can avail of a new €450,000 European fund aimed at protecting the continent’s herds against infectious diseases.

The funding package is aimed at three highly specialised areas of animal health. One such research area of particular interest to Ireland due to the importance of livestock to the Agri-Food sector and the wider economy, is EMIDA (Emerging and Major Infectious Diseases of Livestock).

Funding of Irish research participation will be limited to Paratuberculosis (Johne’s Disease) in ruminant livestock; Improved diagnosis of mycobacterial infections; and Anthelmintic resistance

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney said: “I am very conscious and supportive of the importance of continued investment in research and development, especially considering the ambitious growth targets contained in the Food Harvest 2020 report. The Livestock sector is of crucial importance to this country and I am confident that Irish involvement in transnational research will yield tangible herd health benefits over the coming years resulting in improved profitability on cattle farms.”

The minister wished “every success to Irish researchers and their consortia in applying for funding under the EMIDA research call”.

Ireland is involved in several European Research Area Networks (ERA-NETS).

The objective of the ERA-NET scheme is to improve co-operation and co-ordination of research activities carried out at national or regional level in the member states and associated states via networking of research activities conducted at national or regional level, as well as transnational research calls.

The funding relates to the second EMIDA ERA-Net research call for transnational research.

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