Current EU biofuel policy will not have a significant impact on feed prices in Ireland, according to the Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney.

Responding to a parlimentary question on EU biofuel policy this week from Sinn Fein TB Marin Ferris the Minister said as the grain and feed market is global, prices are established at world market level and not at individual state or even at EU level.

Minister Coveney said the Department of Agriculture monitors global and national grain and feed prices.

According to the Minister the availability of feed stocks is not significantly impacted by the production of biofuels and indeed the main co-products of the biofuel industry used in Ireland – distillers dried grains – are mainly sourced from North and South America.

“Given the limited production of oilseeds in Ireland and the relative low use of cereals for biofuel production, it is not expected that current biofuels policy will have a significant impact on the availability or price of grain and feed in this country,” he said.

The Minister said at present, Ireland’s concentrate feed requirements are in the region of 4.7m tonnes, of which 3m tonnes is imported.

Almost two-thirds of this is sourced from non-EU countries, he said.