Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (1010)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

1010. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the extent to which he is satisfied regarding the adequacy of laboratory facilities here to meet bovine and equine requirements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14263/19]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

My Department's Veterinary Laboratories consist of specialised divisions at Backweston (Virology/ Pathology/ Bacteriology) and a network of Regional Veterinary laboratories across the country providing laboratory diagnostic and surveillance services in respect of food-producing animals. Consequent on this capability and expertise, DAFM Laboratories host National Reference Laboratories for some specific diseases of cattle, horses and other species. The laboratory facilities at Backweston are state-of-the-art and include bio-containment laboratories which allow the safe handling of exotic viruses.

In addition to the services provided by the Department's laboratories, there are numerous private commercial laboratories that provide diagnostic services for cattle and other farmed animals and the Irish Equine Centre which provides capability and expertise in the diagnosis of equine diseases.