The objectives of the Irish Johne’s Control Programme are as follows:
- Enhance the ability of participating farmers to keep their herds clear of JD.
- Enable participating farmers to reduce the level of infection in their herds, where present.
- Provide additional reassurance to the marketplace in relation to Ireland’s efforts to control JD.
- Improve calf health and farm biosecurity in participating farms.
About the programme
This new programme builds on the knowledge and experience gained from the pilot programme, a review of international best practice and extensive consultation with stakeholders.
A phased approach is adopted to implementation, with Phase One, commencing in 2017, acting as a bridge between the pilot programme and the IJCP for those herds that participated in the former. Phase 2, commencing in early 2018, following the completion of an international consultant’s report on the relative effectiveness of the range of programme measures, will open participation to all herds and expand the range of programme measures available to participating farmers.
The programme focuses on building confidence of freedom for test-negative herds and the resolution of infection in infected herds through the implementation of tailored management plans, based on biosecurity risk assessments, risk mitigation practices and testing. Animal health awareness and knowledge transfer is an underpinning element of the programme and a series of regional workshops, convened by milk processors and aimed at promoting an awareness of Johne’s disease prevention and control, will be put in place in Phase One.
During Phase One, herdowners who were formerly enrolled in the pilot programme will be encouraged to register with the programme so that they can become actively involved and benefit from the various funded supports available for activities, including ancillary testing, VRAMP and whole herd testing.
During Phase Two, access to the programme will be broadened to include all herdowners who register with the programme and additional measures will progressively be made available to farmers, including individual herd investigations for confirmed test-positive herds, funded by DAFM and the EU, and delivered through the TASAH measure of the Rural Development Programme. In this phase, measures to support beef farmers will also be developed and progressively rolled out.
The level of financial support available to farmers for the various funded elements of the programme may vary from year to year, subject to the funding limits applicable in a given year and the level of demand. Details of the financial supports available for the remainder of 2017 will be made available from the website in the final quarter of the year.
All farmers are encouraged to find out more about Johne’s disease control and how to manage the risk of Johne’s disease entering and spreading within their herd by participating in a Johne’s disease seminar hosted by their milk processor. Please contact your milk processor for details.
Key Programme Elements
- On-farm veterinary risk assessment and management practices (VRAMP) visit by an approved veterinary practitioner, funded by the milk processor.
- On-farm herd investigation by an approved veterinary practitioner, funded by DAFM and the EU under the Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH) measure of the Rural Development Programme (RDP).
- Ancillary testing (using faecal culture or faecal PCR) to resolve the test status of animals with positive ELISA results, funded by DAFM.
- National surveillance activities for JD. The cost-effectiveness of various possible surveillance and case identification measures will be established through a consultancy, funded by DAFM.
- Farmer seminars and professional development for Dairy Milk Quality Advisors, and Teagasc Dairy Advisers, funded by the milk processor.
- A JD Herd Assurance Score access to which will be controlled by the individual herdowner.
- Centralised registration.
- A comprehensive communications strategy.
- Research to identify and address knowledge gaps.
- Structured programme coordination, monitoring and evaluation.
- Measures aimed at monitoring antimicrobial usage, consistent with the National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance.
How to register
To register for the the Programme you should follow the easy registration process Click here