‘A number of dairy farmers are going to go bankrupt in 2016’

Ireland is only 12 months post-quota and unfortunately, a number of our dairy farmers are going to go bankrupt in 2016, according to Jackie Cahill, Fianna Fail TD.

The Tipperary TD has said that for the first time in living memory, all primary producers are producing below the cost of production.

“At the moment, we have farmers who have heavily borrowed and the average cost of credit in this country is the highest in the EU.

“Farmers are going to need a holiday from payments in 2016 or else farmers will go bankrupt.”

On intervention pricing, Cahill said we have to get at least 26-28c/L in intervention price.

If the intervention price is not increased, some of our 17,500 dairy farmers will go bankrupt.

Cahill went on to say that the onus is on the Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney, that Ireland’s producers are able to survive 2016.

“At 22-23c/L, our milk producers can’t survive and they’re going to need help.”

Measures

Last month, the European Commission announced a second package of exceptional measures to try and solve the deepening crisis in the dairy and pigmeat sectors.

Only last September, the Commission announced a €500m support package for the sectors and it continues to acknowledge the depth and duration of the current agricultural crisis.

European Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan said that the Commission must use the appropriate instruments and actions to enable farmers to be resilient in the face of volatility whilst providing immediate assistance to them.

“I believe that this is a package of measures which, when taken with the full implementation of the September solidarity package, can have a material and positive impact on European agricultural markets and it should now be given the chance to succeed.”