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Addressing the IFA retail conference Getting Fairness for Farmers in the Food Chain in Dublin today, IFA President Joe Healy said the UK model of retail regulation should be replicated by the Irish Government if it’s serious about giving farmers and suppliers are to get fair play in the food supply chain.

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IFA President Joe Healy said IFA will be making a detailed submission to the public consultation set up by the Dept of Agriculture to transpose EU legislation on Unfair Trading Practices into Irish law.

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The UK Groceries Code Adjudicator Christine Tacon will address a conference organised by IFA next month.

 

The conference Getting Fairness for Farmers in the Food Chain is part of IFA’s campaign to bring greater transparency and fairness for farmers in the food chain.

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IFA President Joe Healy wants the Government to push ahead with an independent retail regulator to give effect to tougher legislation on the food chain.

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IFA President Joe Healy has welcomed the adoption today (12 March) by the European Parliament of new rules that will ensure the protection of European farmers against unfair trading practices (UTPS) in the food supply chain.

The new European law builds on a proposal tabled by the European Commission and will cover agricultural and food products traded in the food supply chain, banning for the first time up to 16 unfair trading practices imposed unilaterally by one trading partner on another.

The COPA and COGECA Group on the Food Supply Chain chaired Joe Healy in his capacity as a COPA Vice President, drove the campaign on behalf of European farmers on retail dominance and Unfair Trading Practices (UTPs).

“This is a positive result for farmers who have always been subjected to the whims of large retailers. The unfair trading practices to be banned include: late payments for perishable food products; last minute order cancellations; unilateral or retroactive changes to contracts; forcing the supplier to pay for wasted products and refusing written contracts,” said Joe Healy.

The IFA President acknowledged the work Phil Hogan, EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development has done to achieve this result.

“IFA has campaigned for many years, nationally and in Europe, for a re-balancing of power in the food supply chain. This is crucial to deliver a viable price for farmers, and a return on their work and investment. Many retailers were behaving like modern-day dictatorships, abusing their power to accumulate vast profits. The new rules announced today will re-balance the scale, which is all farmers ever wanted. Another important measure that IFA has called for is the appointment of an independent retail regulator for the food sector.” said Joe Healy.

The Irish Government must now transpose the Directive into Irish Law and IFA wants to see this happen without delay.


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