Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Questions (128)

Mary Butler


128. Deputy Mary Butler asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the procedures in place to detect disease on imported bees; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22924/19]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

We all recognise the important role bees play within agriculture and for biodiversity as both pollinators and honey producers. In support of this role, my Department implements the animal health requirements for trade in bees (Apis mellifera and Bombus spp) between EU Member States that are contained in Council Directive 92/65/EEC (as amended). This Directive harmonised rules for intra-Community trade and established the animal health guarantees for trade between Member States. Rules governing checks on imports contained in Council Directive 90/425/EEC also apply.

All imports of bees from other EU Member States must be notified to my Department 24 hours before the consignment’s arrival in this country. A Health Certificate must accompany each consignment of bees which must be certified by the competent authority in the Member State of origin. This health certificate ensures bees are healthy and free of disease and is checked for compliance by my Department before entry of the imported bees into Ireland. Consignments of bees that do not have a Health Certificate accompanying them are destroyed.

It is important to note that bees may not be imported directly into Ireland from countries outside the EU.