The Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) will stage a national protest commencing at 11:00a.m (Friday, June 11) to highlight what it is referring to as “the dangers in the current CAP [Common Agricultural Policy] proposals and the Climate Action Bill”.

Farmers across Ireland will descend on towns as part of the so-called ‘day of action’. This is the IFA’s first large-scale demonstration since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Day of action locations:

  • Carlow – Tullow;
  • Cavan – Cavan Town;
  • Clare – Ennis;
  • Cork Central – Bandon, Kanturk, Midleton;
  • Cork (N) – Mitchelstown;
  • Cork (W) – Skibbereen;
  • Donegal – Raphoe;
  • Dublin – Swords;
  • Galway – Athenry;
  • Kerry – Tralee;
  • Kildare – Naas;
  • Kilkenny – Kilkenny;
  • Laois – Portlaoise;
  • Leitrim – Manorhamilton;
  • Limerick – Newcastlewest;
  • Longford – Longford Town;
  • Louth – Castlebellingham;
  • Mayo – Ballina;
  • Monaghan – Monaghan Town;
  • Meath – Kells;
  • Offaly – Tullamore;
  • Roscommon – Castlerea;
  • Sligo – Ballymote;
  • Tipperary (N) – Nenagh;
  • Tipperary (S) – Cahir;
  • Westmeath – Mullingar;
  • Waterford – Dungarvan;
  • Wexford – Enniscorthy;
  • Wicklow – Bray.

IFA protest

IFA president, Tim Cullinan said: “Irish farmers are committed to climate action, but policies and targets are being pursued at EU and national level without any assessment of the economic and social impact they will have on farmers and rural Ireland.”

He added:

“The farming and food sector employs 300,000 people across the country and contributed €13bn in exports in 2020.

“Outside of Dublin and the mid-east region, the sector provides between 10% and 14% of employment. This is being forgotten in a rush to sterilise Irish farming.”

He said that the Irish Government must secure the maximum flexibility under the CAP and “fully honour the Programme for Government commitments to co-finance the CAP and allocate €1.5bn from the carbon tax to fund environmental measures”.

“In addition, the flawed Climate Bill contains anomalies which are likely to increase global warming rather than reduce it,” he said.

Farms remove carbon from the atmosphere, he said, but this is not recognised in the definition of carbon budgets in the proposed Climate Bill.

INHFA – ‘Current proposals deliver’

Meanwhile, the Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA) has said it contests the narrative that CAP proposals will undermine the income of Irish farmers.

“Despite suggestions made by some, the current proposals will deliver for the vast majority of Irish farmers,” INHFA president, Colm O’Donnell said.

In relation to delivering improved environmental outcomes in CAP, he said:

“Many of our farmers have been doing this without the proper recognition or reward. It is vital that the delivery of public goods, in terms of improved water and air quality, improved biodiversity and mitigating against climate change, is remunerated in the upcoming CAP.”