IFA Reaction to Govt Support Package for Pig Sector

IFA President Tim Cullinan has acknowledged the support from Government for pig farmers, which is to be approved by Cabinet today.

The package is expected to have €13m in funding.

The IFA President said IFA will be assessing the details of whatever scheme is brought forward. He said it would be important that there is no unrealistic conditionality attached to the scheme.

Tim Cullinan said any attempt to impose a mandatory reduction on farmers would be totally opposed by IFA. “We have seen the difficulties this has created with the BEAM Scheme. It seems the Dept has failed to learn any lessons from this,” he said.

“While any funding is welcome, I am concerned that it will not be enough to stop departures from the sector. We are in real danger of losing a whole sector,” he said. 

The Teagasc Forecast Cashflows estimate the average pig farm is losing nearly €60,000 each month.

IFA appeared before the Joint Oireachtas Committee this afternoon to discuss the income crisis in the pig sector.

7% of pig farmers have already been forced to exit, with a further 20–30% at serious risk of going out of business due to the unprecedented and rapid escalation of feed costs since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Producers have already incurred exceptional losses and it is expected that in total, these losses will exceed €160m from late 2021 to early 2023.

Tim Cullinan said the Irish pig sector is one of the most important sectors in the Irish agricultural economy supporting c. 8,000 jobs and making a substantial contribution to the rural Irish economy.

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