Hogan addresses speculation on Irish beef support package

The European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, has said that he “does not have any more money available for the beef sector at the moment.”

Speaking to AgriLand at the Teagasc/Microsoft partnership launch in Teagasc Ballyhaise, Co. Cavan, this morning, Saturday, April 27, Comissioner Hogan said: “I read it in some publications that there is money available but it is news to me.

“I don’t have any more money available for the beef sector at the moment.”

Continuing, he explained that he “understands that prices have been very difficult for farmers in the last two years and perhaps it was due to the lack of confidence in the market arising from Brexit.”

I certainly feel that there is going to have to be an adjustment in the beef sector when they take into account Brexit.

Concluding, Commissioner Hogan outlined: “We have tools and financial supports available in the context of a hard Brexit but this decision has been postponed now until the end of October.”

IFA efforts

Meanwhile, representatives from the Cavan branch of the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) were at the event to outline to the commissioner why they believe this support package is necessary.

Speaking to AgriLand, chairperson of Cavan IFA, Elizabeth Ormiston, said: “We need support for the Irish beef industry because of the effect Brexit has already had on Irish beef farmers’ pockets.

In the last year, Irish beef farmers are running a loss of tens of millions, in cattle and beef sales alone.

“There is nothing to support Brexit’s effect on the beef market and farmers are just on the floor at the moment. We need this support.”

Concluding, Ormiston stressed that IFA will be continuing to campaign for this support package.