The identification and registration of bovine animals is governed by Council Regulation (EC) No 1760/2000/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council which established a common EU system for the identification and registration of bovine animals. This Regulation provides for the use of ear tags to identify bovine animals and there are no provisions contained therein with regard to micro chipping of bovines. Proposals to amend this regulation to include electronic identification as an official means of identification for bovines are currently being discussed at EU level. These proposals do not include microchipping.
My Department has no plans to unilaterally introduce micro chipping for bovine animals. However, I should point out that, under the bovine identification system in Ireland, keepers may choose to source electronic ear tags from the approved tag supplier as an official means to identify their bovines. Alternatively, the keeper may use an electronic rumen bolus as a supplementary means of identification.