IFA Action on Livestock

Farming Sectors
IFA Action on Livestock

IFA Protest on Cattle Prices - 17th June 2014

17/06/2014 Irish Farmers' Association. Members of

17/06/2014 Irish Farmers' Association. Members of

ag dept protest3

ag dept protest1

Major Campaigns and Activity

  • IFA Campaign on cattle prices this spring including large farmer protests at meat plants and at Minister Coveney’s office.
  • IFA met all of the meat factories at local level with feeders and bull finishers over Christmas and early New Year highlighting the financial problems for winter finishers
  • IFA met with MII and senior factory/group managers, requesting an increase in the bull kill and a stabilization of prices in late January.
  • In February, IFA met Minister Coveney and called on him to convene a Beef Summit and call in the factories, IFA, Teagasc, An Bord Bia and insist on the restoration of price stability in order to restore some confidence to the sector.
  • IFA also highlighted the beef price and specification cuts including the bull beef problem extensively in the media with several IFJ headline reports.
  • A large number of IFA public meetings in strong beef finishing counties were organized  including some in conjunction with County executives; Wexford, Laois Offaly, Westmeath, Donegal, Wicklow, Dublin, Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Cork, Tipperary, Galway, Roscommon, Leitrim, Longford, Clare, Limerick, Kilkenny,
  • IFA set out farmer demands to Minister Simon Coveney on review of beef sector in Beef Forum including issues on specifications and mart trade. IFA demanded that Minister Coveney stand up for farmers, challenge the factories and reject the unviable price cuts and specification changes.
  • The Minister must restore stability and confidence to the sector, and insist the factories return a fair beef price to farmers based on market returns.
  • Presidential Meeting of UK and Irish farm leaders on beef crisis in London
  • Strong campaign on live exports including visit to Spain with Bord Bia  to drive volumes
  • Major opposition to Mercosur and TTIP trade deals which will damage the livestock sector.
  • IFA Euro Election meetings – IFA set out policy demands across all sectors and issues
  • Chair EU Beef Advisory Meeting with Commission and COPA in Brussels
  • IFA Delegation met N Ireland Minister for Agriculture Michelle O’Neill on live exports and trade
  • Meeting with N Ireland beef industry representatives on cattle labelling issue and imports.
  • Several meeting with ICOS on livestock and mart issues
  • Met EU Commission with ICOS on live export trade and removing blockages to Northern Ireland live market.
  • Discussions with UFU on North-South trade for cattle
  • Meeting with Tesco UK and other major retailers
  • IFA Presentation to the Dáil Agriculture Committee following major IFA farmer protest in Dublin on beef.

  • Lobby of Irish and Northern Irish MEPs in Brussels and at home on North/South trade issue.
  • Meeting with Northern Ireland Agri-Food strategy board chairman
  • IFA Meeting with McDonalds on beef requirements
  • Discussions in COPA with EU Commission on new RDP and on US & Mercosur  Trade negotiations
  • Met with Irish meat industry leaders to highlight farmer concerns on beef prices
  • Addressed Animal Welfare Conference highlighting farmers’ work safeguarding animal welfare
  • Meeting CEOs of pillar Banks on farm investment and credit issues
  • Met with Dept of Ag and Dept of Trade on new retailer legislation and competition legislation
  • Lobby of Dept of Agriculture on new €52m Beef Genomics Scheme, increased BTAP and STAP under RDP
  • Meeting with Gerry Boyle Teagasc & Aiden Cotter Bord Bia on FH2020 beef issues, specifications and other issues.
  • ICBF on suckler breeding, beef genomics and FH2020
  • Campaign on the Sheep Grassland Payment: Direct contact with Taoiseach, meeting with Minister Coveney & lobbied all MEPs and TDs
  • Attended Irish-French sheep industry bilateral forum on markets and promotion
  • Meeting with factories on lamb price, markets and 2014 prospects
  • IFA had technical meeting with the Department of Agriculture to assess the income analysis to determine ANC payments on islands, mountain areas, more severely handicapped areas, and less severely handicapped areas in the RDP.
  • Lobbying of Oireachtas Select Committee on CCPB
  • Meeting with FDII re CCPB
  • Meeting with Minister Coveney and Implementation Group on BVD
  • Meeting with Dept of Agriculture and EU Auditors on TB Eradication Programme
  • Study trip to Netherlands & meeting with Dutch farmers (LTO) on fallen animal disposal
  • Discussions with AHI and submitted detailed costing’s to the Minister for targeted supports in the BVD Eradication programme
  • Meeting with Central Bank on forthcoming review of the Code of Conduct for lending to small and medium businesses
  • Meetings withreps from UN, EU Commission, Departments of Environment and Agriculture re climate debate.
  • Nitrates review meeting with Departments of Agriculture and Environment, EPA and Teagasc during which IFA sought assurances that the development of the sector will not be further impacted by restrictive measures.
  • Inputs surveys completed to date: Brucellosis testing charges, Fallen Animal collection charges, vaccine prices, Fertiliser, fuel, grain and feed ingredients and spring cereal seed.


  • IFA RDP campaign secures €580m per year in EU/National funding for new RDP incl GLAS worth €5,000 per year for 50,000 farmers, €195m for ANCs and TAMs for all sectors
  • €1.214b secured for new SFP, Irish convergence model applied to minimise cuts to productive farmers. Flat payments and regionalisation avoided.
  • €80 per cow Suckler Genomics scheme secured, worth €52m pa.
  • Sheep Grassland payment retained and increased to €15m – more progress required.
  • €3m coupled payment secured for protein crops
  • Secured €600,000 for BVD supports
  • Strong campaign on live exports delivers a 21% or 26,000 head increase, particularly calves.
  • Negotiated ferry access for live trade to UK with Stena and commitment on EU ferry access.
  • Min Noonan confirms no plans to change 90% agricultural relief in farm tax review
  • CGT exemption for forced disposal of SFP entitlements worth €25m
  • Nitrates review – Renewal of Ireland’s Nitrates Derogation (250kg/N/Ha) .16% increase in overall national phosphorous allowance
  • Transport Minister agreed to amend regulations on load heights for fodder
  • Beef Forum chaired by Min Coveney established to tackle problems in beef sector and profitability at farm level
  • Producer prices: Strong IFA campaigns on cattle and sheep prices.
  • EU Commission agreed to drop plans to introduce a Soils Directive
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