The Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute laboratory in Belfast will be testing the samples provided by farmers, who will be asked to register and complete a short questionnaire which includes farm details, including number of sheds. The appropriate number of test kits will then be issued directly to the farmer together with instructions on how to collect samples.
The results, once analyzed, will be made available to the industry on an anonymous basis, and it is hoped that they will provide answers, or at least clues, on how to tackle the issue
Gary Ford, National Farmers Union (NFU) chief poultry adviser said: “I am pleased that the NFU have been successful in obtaining this funding. I believe that testing is an important part of better understanding the status of Campylobacter on farm. As Campylobacter does not appear to adversely affect bird health it is difficult for farmers to identify the point at which their flock goes positive for disease.”
Funding for the Campylobacter testing initiative will run until the end of March 2015.