- At national level IFA has undertaken an intensive lobby of politicians focused on the need for immediate Government and EU action to address the market and income crisis on beef and lamb as a result of the COVID-19 Emergency.
- IFA demands and action are based around the detailed IFA Submission to the EU Commission including market supports around an effective type of APS (Aids to Private Storage) and direct payment to farmers on price losses. IFA are also demanding action to address imports and more promotions at retail level.
- Minister Creed and senior officials in the DAFM have been lobbied and fully briefed on the issues.
- At European level through our Brussels office and COPA, the relevant EU Commissioners and Commission officials have all been made fully aware of the very difficult situation at farm level in Ireland. In addition, key players from other member states have been briefed with particular focus on the French, Polish and Italians on beef and the French on sheep.
- IFA has been in contact with the major banks seeking flexibilities on all facilities including overdraft/stocking and term loans. It is important farmers make contact with their bank and apply for assistance.
- Be aware of the IFA Plan B, to assist any farmer unable to farm. See ifa.ie/covid19.
- Latest Lamb Price Update. 6/4/2020. Strong demand for Easter. Factories paying €5.70/5.80 with tops of €5.90 paid. New Season lamb €6.20/6.40/kg. Ewes €2.70/2.80/kg.
- Reduced kill back to 40/45,000 per week.
- Bord Bia have begun their Easter promotions with celebrity chefs posting online cooking demonstrations. Following chefs are cooking lamb for Easter; Catherine Fulvio, JP McMahon, Neven Maguire. In addition, lamb is featuring in the Bord Bia Quality Assurance TV campaign promoting all meats.
- IFA is proposing that the Government and the EU Commission move quickly to examine the introduction of the following measures for the sheep sector. Immediately support farmers with direct payments for any price related market losses, APS for market support, review and suspend non-EU imports during the COVID-19 crisis, a new EU promotional programme for lamb targeted at retail level.
- COPA, the European umbrella body for farm organisations, which IFA is part of in Brussels, has submitted similarrequests to the EU Commission.
- IFA including the National Sheep Committee has been lobbying politicians on the need for Government action at EU level on the COVID-19 crisis.
- In addition, IFA has also been lobbying on Government formation and to ensure that sheep and a targeted payment are part of the programme for Government.