IFA President Tim Cullinan said the Minister for Agriculture and the Govt must now redouble their efforts to secure an immediate return of Irish beef to the Chinese market.
It follows the announcement that Ireland has fulfilled the criteria to attain OIE negligible risk status for BSE.
“It’s a welcome recognition of the work and production standards on Irish farms,” he said.
However, IFA Livestock Chairman Brendan Golden said the critical issue for farmers is to see a meaningful return from the market place in beef prices.
“This is a positive development for beef sales and there is no justification for our beef prices to continue lagging behind the Prime Export Tracker Price by 13c/kg,” he said.
Brendan Golden said market conditions are favourable and strengthening, and base line prices for cattle must move to a minimum of €4.00/kg to reflect the reality of the market place.
“The short-term concerns of Brexit interruption have been removed. We are on track to regain our negligible risk status for BSE, the numbers of cattle are extremely tight and supermarket demand is strong,” he said.
He said factories must return meaningful price increases to align our beef price with the market returns. The starting point is a base of €4.00/kg based on the current Prime Export Tracker price.