€3 QA BONUS SHOWS CONTEMPT FOR FARMERS AND MINISTER – ICSA.

‘…meat factories are forgetting that the Quality Assurance Scheme is only viable if there is a partnership approach.’

Sligo News File Online.

ICSA Beef Chairman, Edmond Phelan
ICSA Beef Chairman, Edmond Phelan

ICSA beef chairman Edmond Phelan has said that proposals by the meat industry for a €3/head quality assured bonus demonstrate contempt not only for farmers but also for the Minister.  “It is now obvious that the meat industry believes that it has no need for any sort of partnership approach,  whether under the beef roundtable or any other mechanism,” he said.

“However, the meat factories are forgetting that the Quality Assurance Scheme is only viable if there is a partnership approach.  It is now time for all farm organisations to re-evaluate whether support for the QAS is warranted given the contempt shown by meat factories.  Apart from the derisory offer of  €3/head, factories have reneged on the commitment to end dual pricing.  We have seen substantial cuts on animals that are deemed not quality assured which is totally contrary to the terms agreed at the last roundtable.”

Mr. Phelan pointed out that the €3 bonus represented less than 7% of the current 12c bonus on a typical steer, at a time when prices should be on a significant upward trajectory.  “ICSA has not been consulted on this by the meat industry which demonstrates that the meat industry is not serious about the roundtable process.”