Vegetable growers who are owed over €300,000 for produce have protested at two branches of Ulster Bank today (Tues) over the bank’s treatment of the growers in the recent forced sale of Groomes Vegetable Suppliers (GVS) in Balbriggan, Co Dublin.

IFA Deputy President Eddie Downey has accused Ulster Bank of riding roughshod over the livelihoods of about 20 vegetable and potato growers in north county Dublin, Meath and Cavan. Growers have been left with individual losses of up to €50,000 following Ulster Bank’s appointment of a receiver to Groomes.

“There is huge anger in the farming community over Ulster Bank’s move to protect their own interests while sacrificing growers and their families. Ulster Bank are clearly the powerbrokers in this situation and this is once again an example of the banks looking after themselves and hammering small family businesses trying to survive and earn a livelihood.”

Eddie Downey said he was appalled the way Ulster Bank stood by while the company continued taking in fresh produce from growers that the Bank must have known would never be paid for. “By their behaviour the Bank have screwed growers in order to protect themselves and their own bad business decisions.”

The IFA Deputy President said that Ulster Bank must live up to their responsibilities in this situation and deal fairly with the growers affected by the Bank’s actions.

Growers’ protests are taking place today in the Ulster Bank branches in Malahide, Co Dublin and Ballyjamesduff, Co Cavan in solidarity with the producers who are facing losses of over €300,000.

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