Approval and Registration of Dealers
Under the European Communities (Approval and Registration of Dealers of Bovine Animals and Swine) Regulations 2007 (S. I. No. 151 of 2007) and the European Communities (Approval and Registration of Dealers of Ovine Animals) Regulations 2008 (S. I. No. 100 of 2008) all dealers engaged in the buying and selling of animals must be registered.
In the case of cattle and pigs, a dealer is deﬁned as a person who purchases and sells to another person, within a period of 30 days. A person who buys and resells within 30 days, less than 100 cattle in any 12 month period, will be excluded from the requirements to be approved as a dealer.
In the case of sheep, a dealer is deﬁned as a person who purchases and sells to another person within a period of 29 days. A person who buys and resells within 29 days, less than 100 sheep in any 12 month period, will similarly be considered to be excluded from the requirements to be approved as a dealer.
All dealers engaged must be approved and registered by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. It is not permitted for a person to buy/acquire/source an animal from or sell/supply/dispose of an animal to a dealer unless the dealer is approved, registered and in possession of a current approval number under the aforementioned legislation. In addition, if a dealer is assembling/holding animals, he/she must have premises, which has been approved for that speciﬁc purpose.
However, the following exemptions apply:
• A person who resides outside the State, who buys animals in the State on his or her own account;
• A person, who selects or bids for animals (on a commission or per head basis) exclusively on behalf of others (e.g. dealers, factories or private individuals) but who does not buy and pay for the animals, is excluded from the deﬁnition of a dealer and therefore is not required to be approved as a dealer.
The legislation requires that those who register as dealers comply with arrangements relating to the welfare and transport of animals, standards and upkeep of premises, keeping of records and compliance with animal notiﬁcation and disease testing procedures.
Each dealer must make a written application for approval and registration as a dealer in respect of each premises used for his/her dealing operations. The written application(s) shall be made to the local Regional Veterinary Oﬃce (RVO) of the Department in which the premises are situated, see list of RVOs at Appendix 1B. If the application is for approval as dealer without premises, the written application should be made to the District Veterinary Oﬃce in the county where the dealer is resident or carries out most of the dealing operations.
A person who, for the purpose of obtaining a licence for himself or another person, makes a statement or representation which is to his knowledge false or misleading in a material respect shall be guilty of an offence.
Regulations Governing the Sale of Animals at Livestock Marts
The Livestock Marts Act, 1967 (Date of Test and Identiﬁcation of Seller) Regulations 2002 (S.I. No. 188 of 2002) came into eﬀect on 1 July 2002. This legislation requires all livestock
marts to place on view by means of an electronic display unit the following information, 10
when the sale of an animal takes place at a mart:
• The name and full address of the owner and the person in whose name the herd or ﬂock from which the animal is being oﬀered for sale is registered;
• Where the animals has been tested for either or both Bovine Tuberculosis and Bovine Brucellosis under the Diseases of Animals Act, 1966 (No. 6 of 1966);
• Where an animal is presented for sale by or on behalf of a dealer, a statement to that fact.
This information must be clearly legible to each person present at or in the immediate vicinity of the sales ring where an animal is being oﬀered for sale. In circumstances where sheep are being sold direct from pens the Regulations require that the relevant details be publicly announced before the sale.
The purpose of this legislation is to ensure that there is greater transparency in the operations of livestock marts and that clients are provided with a uniform quality of service.
Prohibition of unlicensed livestock marts.
Livestock means cattle, sheep or pigs. A person shall not carry on the business of a livestock mart at any place unless there is for the time being a licence in force in respect of that place. A person who contravenes this requirement shall be guilty of an offence.
On the application of or on behalf of a person who proposes to carry on the business of a livestock mart at a specified place in such form and containing such particulars as the Minister may direct, the Minister may, at his discretion, grant or refuse to grant a licence authorising the carrying on of the business of a livestock mart at that place.A person who, for the purpose of obtaining a licence for himself or another person, makes a statement or representation which is to his knowledge false or misleading in a material respect shall be guilty of an offence.
The Minister may, at the time of the granting of a licence, attach to the licence such conditions as he shall think proper and shall specify in the licence. The Minister may, if he so thinks fit, amend or revoke a condition attached to a licence. Upon breach of a condition attached to a licence the holder of the licence shall be guilty of an offence.Where the holder of a licence is guilty of any offence under this Act, the Minister may, if he so thinks fit, revoke the licence.
Whenever the Minister proposes to refuse to grant a licence or to revoke a licence because of a contravention of regulationst prescribing any matter specified ihe shall, before doing so, notify the holder of the applicant for the licence of his intention and of the reasons therefor, and, if any representations are made to the Minister within seven days after the date of the giving of the notification by the holder or applicant, as the case may be, the Minister shall consider them.
Whenever the Minister proposes to revoke a licence because of a contravention of regulations , the Minister shall not do so until the expiration of one month after the date of the giving of the notification aforesaid, and, if, within seven days after the giving of the notification aforesaid, the holder of the licence makes a request to the Minister for the holding of an inquiry in relation to the matter, the Minister shall cause an inquiry to be held (unless, as result of the consideration of representations made to him, the Minister has decided not to revoke the licence).
Where an inquiry is held under this subsection, the Minister shall not revoke the licence until he has considered the report of the person holding the inquiry. The Minister shall appoint a person who is a practising barrister of at least ten years’ standing to hold any inquiry under this subsection and the person so appointed shall have power to take evidence on oath which he is hereby authorised to administer and shall make a report to the Minister of his findings at the inquiry.
The Minister shall give to the person who requested the holding of the inquiry notice of the time and place of the holding of the inquiry and the person shall be entitled to appear at the inquiry personally or by counsel or solicitor and to adduce evidence. There shall be paid to a person holding an inquiry under this subsection such remuneration as the Minister, with the consent of the Minister for Finance, may fix. Whenever the Minister revokes a licence, he shall cause a statement of his reasons for doing so to be laid before each House of the Oireachtas.
Exemption from Act.
The Minister may, if he so thinks fit, grant exemption from the licence requirements in respect of the carrying on of any particular business or business of any particular class or kind. The (2) This Act shall not apply in relation to a particular business or business of a particular class or kind in respect of which an exemption has been granted and has not been withdrawn. An exemption may be withdrawn at any time by the Minister.
Regulations in relation to livestock marts.
The Minister may, for the purpose of ensuring the proper conduct of places where the business of a livestock mart is carried on and the proper conduct of such businesses, adequate and suitable hygienic and veterinary standards in relation to such places and auctions of livestock at such places and the provision of adequate and suitable accommodation and facilities for such auctions and for persons and livestock at such auctions, make such regulations as he thinks appropriate in relation to such places and such businesses.
- prescribe the manner in which entries for auctions of livestock at such places shall be received,
- provide that entries for such auctions shall not be refused except in circumstances prescribed in the regulations,
- prescribe the manner in which such auctions shall be conducted,
- provide that the receipt of entries for and the conduct of such auctions shall be carried out in accordance with conditions of sale drawn up by the owner of each such place and approved of by the Minister and that the conditions of sale relating to any such place shall be displayed in a prominent position which is accessible to the public at that place,
- prescribe requirements as to the size, design, maintenance, repair, cleansing, cleanliness, ventilation, heating and lighting of any buildings in which such auctions are held,
- prescribe requirements as to the accommodation (including washing facilities and sanitary conveniences) provided at such places,
- prescribe requirements as to and provide for the veterinary examination of livestock at such auctions, the veterinary inspection of livestock marts and the veterinary supervision of such auctions,
- provide for the inspection of such places and the supervision of such auctions by health authorities and their officers,
- prescribe hygienic and veterinary requirements and standards for such places and such auctions.
A person who contravenes a provision of regulations shall be guilty of an offence.
Powers of officers of Minister.
An officer of the Minister shall, for the purposes of the execution of this Act, have power to do all or any of the following
- to enter, inspect and examine at all reasonable times by day a place where the business of a livestock mart is carried on;
- to require the production of any documents, required to be kept in pursuance of regulations under this Act, and to inspect, examine and copy any of them;
- to make such examination and inquiry as may be necessary to ascertain whether the provisions of this Act and the regulations thereunder and the enactments for the time being in force relating to public health are complied with, so far as respects the place;
- to require the person who carries on the business of a livestock mart at the place or any person holding a responsible position of management at the place or, in the absence of any such person, any person whom he finds in the place and whom he has reasonable cause to believe to be employed in the place to give such information as it is in his power to give as to who is carrying on the business of a livestock mart in the place;
- to exercise such other powers as may be necessary for carrying this Act into effect.
If any person wilfully delays an officer of the Minister in the exercise of any power or fails to comply with the requisition of such an officer in pursuance of this section, or to produce any document which he is required in pursuance of regulations under this Act to produce, or wilfully withholds any information he is required in pursuance of this Act to give, that person shall be deemed to obstruct an officer of the Minister in the execution of his duties under this Act.
Where an officer of the Minister is obstructed in the execution of his powers or duties under this Act the person obstructing the officer of the Minister shall be guilty of an offence. An officer of the Minister performing functions under this Act shall be furnished with a certificate of his authorisation to perform those functions, and when visiting a place where the business of a livestock mart is carried on shall, if so required, produce the said certificate to the person who carries on such business or any other person holding a responsible position of management at the place.
Offences and punishments.
Every person who attempts or aids, abets, assists, counsels or procures another person, or conspires with another person, to commit an offence under this Act shall be guilty of an offence.
Where a licence offence of this Act is committed at any place in relation to livestock and a person is, by reason of having sold or bought or offered to sell or buy the livestock at that place, charged with an offence under this section, it shall be a defence for the person to prove that he did not know that there was not, at the time of the sale, purchase or offer, as the case may be, a licence in force in respect of that place.
Where an offence under this Act is committed by a body corporate or by a person purporting to act on behalf of a body corporate or an unincorporated body of persons, and is proved to have been so committed with the consent or approval of, or to have been facilitated by any default on the part of any person being, in the case of a body corporate, a director thereof, or, in the case of an unincorporated body, a member of the committee of management or other controlling authority thereof, that person shall also be guilty of the offence.
Regulations Governing Assembly Centres
The European Communities (Assembly Centres) Regulations 2000 (S.I. No. 257 of 2000) implements Council Directive 97/12/EC of 17 March 1997. An assembly centre is a holding, collection centre or market at which animals from diﬀerent holdings are grouped together to form consignments of animals intended for export to other Member States of the European Union. Assembly Centres must be approved for trading purposes and meet the requirements laid down in the aforementioned legislation. An Assembly Centre may only commence operations once it has been inspected and approved by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.
The species, class and type of animals approved to be handled by an Assembly Centre may be limited to certain terms or conditions deemed appropriate by the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine. Where the Minister approves an Assembly Centre an approval number will be allocated with any terms or conditions attached.
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