Brussels Daily
21 Oct 2016


Brussels Daily

EU sheepmeat forum concludes recommendations for the sheep sector


The fourth and final meeting of the EU sheepmeat forum took place in Brussels on October 13, with the members of the group agreeing on range of policy recommendations pdf - 283 KB [283 KB] as potential responses to the problems and opportunities that the sector faces. Established last year on the initiative of Commissioner Phil Hogan, the Forum has brought together representatives from the different parts of the chain – production, processing, trading – in order to discuss the current and future challenges of the EU sheepmeat sector.

Addressing the closing meeting, Commissioner Hogan confirmed: “The Commission will evaluate the Forum’s recommendations and will also inform Ministers in the Council on the outcome of the Forum, as there is clearly more that can be done at Member State level. The various players in the private sector can also play a greater role. In order to facilitate market monitoring, a newly established sheepmeat dashboard pdf - 2 MB [2 MB] is online from today, and it will be regularly updated whenever new market data is available. I agree with you that sheepmeat deserves special attention within our promotion policy.”

Chaired by John Bryan (former president of the Irish Farmers Association), the Forum has held four 1-day conferences between November 2015 and October 2016, calling on experts in order to discuss different areas of policy – promotion, trade policy, consumer affairs, environmental and social issues, as well as technology and innovation.

  • The first day conference on 12th November was devoted to identify perspectives and challenges on economic, social and environmental sustainability of sheep farming. The morning session was devoted to 4 presentations by the independent experts and the afternoon to the general debate among participants.
  • The second conference on 25th February was dedicated to analyse sheep trade in the EU and different parts of the world by 3 independent experts(morning session) and on marketing strategies to improve EU sheep meat uptake by 5 representatives of organisations running EU funded promotion programmes.
  • The third conference on 29th June 2016 was committed to present the EU policy that is applied directly or not specifically to the sheep sector as market and trade issues, direct support, cross compliance and sheep identification, rural development and promotion programmes. Speakers from several Commission services did not only participate for the presentations but also during the following discussions.
  • The fourth conference heard two short presentations on EU research programmes and an academic one on sheep as provider of public goods, and then concentrated on concluding the recommendations of the forum, starting from draft recommendations prepared by the chair based on the discussions during the workshops and contributions submitted by the various stakeholders.


>> More details (including the different presentations made to each of the meetings)

>> More about the EU sheepmeat sector

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