Responding to reports from Brussels, IFA President Joe Healy has welcomed the removal of some sensitive products, in particular beef, from the draft offer on Mercosur being considered by EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström.
Joe Healy said IFA had raised grave concerns over the inclusion of beef in the Commission’s draft offer and had taken up this matter directly with the Taoiseach and the Minister for Agriculture. Mr Healy said within 36 hours of being elected, he had travelled to Brussels to raise the matter with the EU Commission at the highest level.
Joe Healy said any negotiating strategy based on concessions on sensitive products including beef was totally flawed and this was clear from the growing opposition that had emerged to the inclusion of beef among 20 Member States at the Farm Council. IFA will continue to build alliances with other countries which share our real concerns about the impact of these negotiations”.
The IFA President said the new Government must be vigilant and make it clear in Brussels that there is no justification for re-introducing beef into the Mercosur negotiations.