ICSA challenges Coveney’s statement on sheep industry

‘Despite Minister’s attempt to put positive spin on the current difficulties, serious problems remain’
‘Vague references to supposed benefits under the GLAS and ANC only serve to muddy the waters’
’30-day residency requirement huge deterrent to live exports’
‘Delivering questionnaire can hardly be described as progress to secure new export markets such as China’

Sligo News File Online.

John Brooks, National Chairman, ICSA Sheep Committee
John Brooks,
National Chairman, ICSA Sheep Committee

ICSA sheep chairman John Brooks has taken issue with a recent statement by Minister Coveney in relation to support for the sheep industry, and in particular, live exports.

The national chairman said:

“We cannot say that we are fully supportive of live exports without considering the huge deterrent of the 30-day residency
requirement. ICSA would like to see the Department moving to end or reduce this restriction to give farmers more options for disposing of stock.

“The Minister referred to efforts to secure new export markets such as China, but nothing concrete has been achieved on this, and delivering a questionnaire to the Chinese can hardly be described as progress. There appears to be a distinct lack of urgency on this.

“Despite the Minister’s clear attempt to put a positive spin on the current difficulties faced by sheep farmers, serious problems
remain in the Irish sheep industry.

Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney, TD.
Minister for Agriculture,
Simon Coveney, TD.

“Vague references to supposed benefits for the sector under the GLAS and ANC schemes only serve to muddy the waters, given that there is nothing in these schemes that is specific to sheep farmers. 

“We urgently need to see real progress on opening up the live export option.”