IFA President Tim Cullinan said the decision by McDonald’s to close its restaurants here and in the UK will put further pressure on the beef sector.
“Unfortunately, this is what’s happening across Europe where closures have had an impact on the food service sector. However, some of this has been mitigated by an increase in retail trade as people are buying more at home,” he said.
The IFA President said the EU Commission and Minister Michael Creed need to instigate a series of measures to support farmers to ensure that essential food supplies continue to be available for all citizens.
- Make the necessary adjustments to EU beef market supports (Intervention, APS) so as to be in a position to provide realistic beef market price supports.
- Move to protect the internal EU market and suspend all non-EU beef imports including South American imports, which do not meet EU standards.
- Adjustments to State Aid rules to give more flexibility to the Irish Government to support farmers.
- Allocate the necessary funding so the Commission is in a position to provide additional urgent direct payment supports to farmers to compensate for beef market losses.
- A review of the inspection requirements so that all farmers can get all of their direct payments without any hold up because of inspections.
“The Irish beef price is already well below the cost of production for farmers. They cannot sustain any further cuts,” he said.