Livestock health management is critical to farmer profitability and Ireland’s global agri-food marketability, leading veterinarians claimed at the annual CAVI conference in Cork.
The maintenance of herd health in the context of Ireland’s dairy expansion was a key focus for the Cattle Association of Veterinary Ireland’s three-day conference.
CAVI chairman Conor Geraghty said: “The expected dairy expansion over the next five years is probably the greatest change to affect Irish agriculture since accession to the EU. It is an exciting time. The challenges that we now face include sustainable expansion, resource efficiency and anti-microbial resistance. Irish vets are continuing to upskill to support farmer clients and industry but all stakeholders need to collaborate to realise our goals.”
The 200 livestock veterinarians at the event also heard expert views on sustainability and the threat of anti-microbial resistance to herd health.
“Maintaining and improving animal health and minimising disease risk supports high-quality food standards and will lead to increased marketability of Irish produce,” said John Gilmore, a vet in Co. Roscommon. “However it also contributes to improved overall profitability and efficiencies on Irish farms because it reduces the costs of treating diseases and reduces the losses in output and production.”
A vet who also holds an MSc in Risk Management, Mr Gilmore said vets have an important role to play alongside farmers and policymakers, as part of the collaboration of effort to tackle constraints to sustainable growth.
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