DUP MLA for East Londonderry Adrian McQuillan, has said that the Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development is failing farmers in the fight against TB.
The Minister, Michelle O’Neill, is failing in reducing and eradicating TB on our farms, as well as creating difficulties for local farmers in the red tape applied to the process,” said McQuillan.
“This is not what our local farmers need in the current climate, which is difficult enough to weather on its own without the Minister making life more difficult for our farmers.”
McQuillan said that he has been contacted by numerous farmers in East Londonderry whose cattle have been diagnosed with TB and culled. He went on: “ When they are being disposed of, tested again, they are found to be clear of TB.
“While being found in the clear, they are still subjected to regular Department imposed checks, which means that they are unable to sell their cattle, effectively being banned from trading.
“This needs sorted out. The Minister needs to act to make life easier for our farmers by cutting the red tape as well as stepping up the fight against TB. Time is not on our side and the failure of the Minister to act quickly and with confidence is impacting negatively on the lives of farmers never mind our local agriculture industry.” the DUP MLA said.