Meat Industry Ireland beef policy document under fire from ICSA

‘Demanding farmers produce more so others can profit won’t cut it for farmers anymore’

‘Processors dropping prices after a night of heavy rain has no place in partnership with producers’

Sligo News File Online.

The country’s leading farm organisation has spoken out against the new Meat Industry Ireland beef policy document, warning that it would be “bad news for producers”

ICSA National Beef Committee Chairman, Edmond Phelan
ICSA National Beef Committee Chairman, Edmond Phelan

“Increased production has always resulted in a price drop for farmers,” said chairman of the ICSA national beef committee, Edmond Phelan.

He said:

“History has shown that if cattle numbers go up price comes down. Recent weeks have seen a severe fall in beef price, partially blamed on Brexit but clearly also linked to cattle being too plentiful.

“We have also seen that the meat industry will pay as little as they can get away with not what the market will return.

“Demanding that farmers produce more so others can profit just won’t cut it for farmers anymore.

“We need to get to a position whereby the relationship processors have with producers is one of partnership. Opportunism, such as processors dropping prices after a night of heavy rain, has no place in such a partnership.

“While many farmers have the potential to increase production, ICSA would see no point in going that route until farmers are fully confident in being rewarded for their efforts.”

Mr Phelan added that the ICSA looks forward to working with MII and “drawing out how exactly an increase in production such as they suggest would benefit farmers, given that we have seen no benefit in the past from such a policy.”