FF: EU Must Intervene Over Falling Beef Prices

Fianna Fáil is putting pressure on the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine to request EU funding in order to mitigate the losses for farms as beef prices fall.

Spokesperson on Food and Horticulture Jackie Cahill warned that the current price for beef is unsustainable and if it is not rectified farmers will leave the business. The Tipperary TD said the market disturbance funds are necessary following a series of additional price cuts over the last three months.

"Current steer prices are on the floor at €3.45 per KG and farmers are becoming completely disillusioned with the government's response to the crisis," Deputy Cahill said. "The situation is exceptionally serious – over the past number of months prices have fallen further than they did during the reference period for the new Beef Exceptional Aid Measure scheme (BEAM).

"The recent negotiations have not resolved the pricing issue, and some protests at factories have resumed. The Minister needs to step in and assure beef farmers that the Irish government will request market disturbance funding from EU Commission.

"Minister Creed is doing little or nothing to use live exports as a tool to solve the supply issue. If live exports are not increased, the price of weanlings and stores will be under pressure at the back end of the year.

"While a number of issues remain to be ironed out, such as the 30-month requirement and four-movement rule, the Minister must now make a request to the Commission for market disturbance funding.

"Commissioner Hogan and his European colleagues must not be left in the dark about just how serious the situation has become. Irish beef farmers need immediate financial support in order to save their livelihoods."


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