IFA Fruit and Vegetable Committee Chair Niall McCormack has announced that IFA will hold a national meeting for horticulture growers on Tuesday April 25that 8pm in the CityNorth Hotel, Gormanston, Co.Meath.
The meeting will address the major challenges in the horticulture sector with guest speakers from Teagasc, Bord Bia and DAFM on the night.
The Irish horticultural sector is under severe pressure due to market challenges, input costs and longstanding issues such as labour and land availability.
These issues must be addressed, or the consolidation of growers will inevitably continue.
“We have lost key growers from our industry in the past 2 years, it is projected that the area of field vegetables will contract by a minimum of 7% again this year. This downward trajectory cannot continue,” Niall McCormack said.
“On one hand we have Government looking to foster and expand our sustainable horticultural sector, yet unless radical changes are made the reality is that our sector will continue to contract resulting in the loss of family farms,” he added.
“The unprecedented wet spring to date has results in additional challenges and delays for growers. The importance of underpinning our domestic Irish production has never been as important following recent shortages of certain products and the emphasis on food security,” Niall McCormack concluded.
All growers are encouraged to attend this importance meeting of all horticulture commodities.