IFA will hold a protest in Roscommon Town on Mon morning (Feb 13th) to highlight the deepening income crisis on sheep farms.
IFA President Tim Cullinan said the latest price cut has angered sheep farmers who are grappling with very severe input costs.
The protest will assemble at Roscommon mart at 10.30am.
“The margins on sheep farms have been trimmed to the bone, having fallen by 81% to just €7/ewe, which includes the Sheep Welfare Scheme payment. Factories cannot expect producers to keep going on this margin,” he said.
He said the income crisis facing sheep farmers has reached a critical stage and requires immediate action from the Government.
Tim Cullinan said IFA has made a strong case to Minister McConalogue to provide targeted support of €30/ewe to sheep farmers by building on the supports already announced in the Sheep Improvement Scheme of €12/ewe for this year.
IFA Sheep Chairman Kevin Comiskey said the level of anger among farmers at the meeting in Tuam on Wed night with the Government’s failure to support the sector was plain for all to see.
He said the challenges facing the sector were pointed out last Spring to the Minister. No action was taken by him and sheep farmers paid a heavy price with incomes effectively wiped out, dropping by over 80% to €7/ewe through a combination of input cost increases and market failures.
“We are now facing into a similar, or even more challenging year, and the Government must clearly set out what support is there for the sector.”