The Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine (DAFM) has suspended Athenry Mart’s licence.
Confirming the news to That’s Farming, this afternoon (Monday, April 26th, 2021) a DAFM spokesperson said:
“The licence issued to Athenry mart was suspended on April 22nd. This was due to a breach of a licence condition related to COVID-19 safety procedure. Department officials are in contact with management at the mart in order to progress matters.”
“Any mart that is currently trading has had its Level 5 COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) approved by Department officials.”
“Each mart is subject to ongoing inspections to monitor compliance with Level 5 COVID-19 SOPs; breaches may lead to the suspension of the mart licence. No other marts have currently had their licence suspended,” the spokesperson concluded.
- The mart is no longer a public auction but rather an auction by appointment whereby all sellers and buyers must give advance notice of their intention to attend the centre;
- Face coverings are mandatory and must be worn. Hand washing is essential and sanitising gels must be used;
- As is currently the case, all people attending the mart must have their time and mobile number recorded;
- All sellers dropping animals must then immediately leave the mart premises;
- All potential buyers must contact the mart manager to arrange and get approval to view livestock before the sale.
- The actual viewing time allotted for viewing is up to the mart manager to decide. When the viewing time is up, all potential buyers must leave the mart premises and bid remotely online;
- Any mart not online can use a tendering system as was in place last March. Sales cannot start if buyers are on the premises.
- Buyers must co-operate and adhere to all necessary measures instructed during viewing times;
- Social distancing of 2 metres is obligatory at all times and “there is to be no waiting or hanging around by customers on the premises”;
- All sellers must be available to receive phone calls to accept /decline final bids for livestock, by arrangement with their local mart.