IFA National Poultry Chairman Alo Mohan said the Safefood report outlines clearly for consumers that 90% of the chicken consumed at food service level is imported. This means that consumers are being misled in relation to the origin of their food.
Retailers in general have rowed in behind the Irish poultry industry . In supermarkets Bord Bia Irish Quality Assured chicken, raised to the highest standards, predominates.
Mr. Mohan said, “There will always be problems in the food industry where some operators will attempt to undercut the market and sell off imported meat as Irish. These inferior imported products undermine the efforts of Irish farmers who operate to the highest standards.<span> At retail level consumers can usually make an informed choice as products are labelled and naturally we encourage consumers to look for the tri-colour quality assurance logo when they purchase chicken products”.
However at food service level, in restaurants, hotels, petrol stations and serve over counters, there is no transparency on the origin of the chicken served.
Labelling legislation is in place for beef + although we feel this legislation is poorly policed, it does provide a level of clarity and consumer protection for red meat that is sadly lacking for the white meat sector in Ireland. Support for the poultry industry by food service would provide for a definite continuation of Irish production of Ireland’s favourite meat product, Irish chicken.