Commenting on the ongoing Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) protest outside retail distribution centers over current beef prices, the Beef Plan Movement has called for a convening of “open dialogue” between farmers, meat processors and retailers.

According to a statement from Beef Plan: “The breakdown in supply and mistrust in the supply chain has gone on for too long and it is now time for change, open dialogue and a willingness to participate to bring about change.”

Continuing, the statement emphasised the need for all three stakeholders – in particular the processors and retailers – to engage in dialogue.

It explained: “The same level of responsibility lies on both the retailers and meat processors to come to the table and bring about change.”

The statement added that discussions to bring about change is necessary “to protect our beef industry”.

The Beef Plan statement drew attention to the “aging demographic” in the beef industry and stressed the importance of the Irish suckler herd, which it said “is our flagship for promoting beef”.

Unless a sustainable and viable future can be achieved, this aging demographic will spiral out of control and will see the death of the Irish suckler herd.

Concluding, the statement reiterated: “Beef Plan now calls for immediate engagement and dialogue. The ball is firmly at the feet of retailers and processors.”