Wednesday, 15 September 2021
Ceisteanna - Questions (Resumed) - Ceisteanna ar Sonraíodh Uain Dóibh - Priority Questions
I thank the Tánaiste. I am a member of the agriculture committee. In fairness to Deputy Cahill, he has brought this issue up also. It was going to be looked into at one of the meetings. If the arrangement had been implemented, especially on the food side, it is unknown how many vets would have been needed to sign off on products. My understanding from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is that it expected people to have products ready from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Many companies might work for six days per week and would not have storage places. This is where Enterprise Ireland and the Minister's Department need to come in. The companies would not have the storage space to store some of the foodstuffs they are exporting. Whether someone knew something or not, there was no willingness up until the last week to have enough vets on stream. In fairness, an awful lot of vets would be needed. Would the Minister's Department be able to take an interest, work with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and ensure Enterprise Ireland gets involved and teases out the problems? Whether it is tomorrow or in a year's time, the arrangement will come down the road sooner or later.