An Taisce’s to put Food Harvest 2020 under microscope

An Taisce’s North Tipperary Association is holding a major seminar to be held in the Abbey Court Nenagh, Friday 9th May at 8:00 pm regarding “Food Harvest 2020 – a vision for Irish Agri-food and Fisheries: Are you prepared?”

It says Food Harvest 2020 is being promoted as the answer to Ireland’s future prosperity, but it has attracted little general discussion.

The Department of Agriculture’s targets include exports of €12bn, including a value-add of €3bn. Milk quotas are to be abolished and dairy to increase by 50%, beef by 40% and there are additional targets for sheep, pigs, food, energy crops, forestry and marine.

Some of the topics to be addressed at the seminar:

  • Can Ireland achieve these figures in a sustainable manner and protect its prestige green image globally? Or is it a recipe for pollution and below-cost commodity prices for farmers, while the global agri-giants make mega-profits?
  • Is the environment a constraint to making farming profitable, or is a clean environment a profitable approach to farming and healthy food?
  • Is the future one of intensive factory farming and routine use of antibiotics, pesticides, herbicides and Genetically Modified food? Or perhaps a green, clean Ireland of low-volume, top-quality, high-margin value-add produce?
  • Many consumers in Europe and worldwide want no Genetically Modified food, yet the IFA are calling for easier access to GM feed! Is it profits at all costs as far as Irish farmers are concerned

Find out more about what the policy entails for the food you will eat or produce. Hear and discuss the experts’ views at Nenagh Abbey Court Hotel, 8pm Friday 9th May 2014.

Speakers:
• Dr Lance O’Brien. – Head of the Teagasc Foresight and Strategy Department.
• Dr Oliver Moore – EU Correspondent & Communications Manager with ARC2020, a platform for 150+ NGOs working towards better food, farming, rural and environmental policies in Europe. He is also writes a weekly column for the Irish Examiner newspaper.
• Jack McCarthy – An Taisce’s Agri-Environment Officer. A policy analyst with a particular interest ground up solutions to food security and agricultural sustainability issues. Jack has an MSc. in Human Geography from the University of Edinburgh.

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