The Irish beef industry is not broken Рit was never structured properly, according to IFA President Eddie Downey who is meeting the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine tonight as part of the organisations ongoing attempts to address the beef crisis.

Speaking at the IFA’s pre-budget submission today, Eddie Downey said he was meeting the Minister on a ‘range of issues’, including the beef industry. “The beef industry is not broken, it was never fixed and it has never been properly structured,” he said.

He also said that there must be a “leap of faith” in the ongoing efforts of the stakeholders including the beef summit. He said that Food Harvest 2020 is a target for output, but the industry needs a plan that works. He pointed to beef finishers as being particularly badly hit by the current beef crisis.

In recent weeks local contingents of the IFA have staged protests outside retailers including Dunnes Stores, Supervalu and Tesco with three planned for today. According to the IFA President, the retailers “cannot be exonerated” when it comes to the price farmers receive for their produce as they form part of the food chain. He said the IFA campaign for better prices is “ongoing on different fronts” but would not be drawn on whether the retailers of processors were to blame.

He said the IFA’s campaign is ongoing in relation to livestock prices and that protests around the country will continue to take place.