Since last Sunday’s emergency meeting of the IFA Executive Council, IFA President Eddie Downey said not enough progress has been made on the key issue of the gap between Irish and UK cattle prices. He said the meat factories must reflect the higher market returns back to farmers.
Eddie Downey said farmers will be protesting at meat plants around the country from 3pm on Sunday afternoon for 48 hours.
After over eight hours of discussions on specifications under the chairmanship of Michael Dowling with the meat factories today, Eddie Downey said progress was made, but there are still outstanding issues.
The IFA President was accompanied by the National Livestock Chairman Henry Burns and Deputy President Tim O’Leary as well as other representatives at the meeting.
Eddie Downey said, “Bord Bia confirmed to the Beef Forum that cattle prices in the UK market have improved by 30c/kg in recent months and this must be reflected in returns to Irish farmers. Cattle prices here have improved by 10c/kg over the last week, but this is nowhere near enough the strong returns in our main export market in the UK”.
The IFA President said all of the specification issues, including the QPS and weight limits, and the other issues that have led to the collapse of trust between farmers and factories this year have to be fully addressed.