ICSA delegation enters Kepak Athleague for talks

The Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association (ICSA) has entered into Kepak Athleague, Co. Roscommon, for talks, temporarily suspending their block on access to the factory.

The talks come following a protest lasting more than a day outside the meat plant, having kicked off at 2:00pm yesterday afternoon.

Speaking to AgriLand, a spokesperson for the organisation said that the protesters are all still outside, “waiting to see what happens”.

“We’re still here but we’re not blocking the gate at the minute, we’re across from the main gate.

We’re all still here. Depending on how the talks go we’ll decide our next move.

A delegation of four ICSA representatives is currently in discussions with the factory’s management, according to the association, namely: sheep chairman Sean McNamara; ICSA general secretary Eddie Punch; John Cleary; and Philip Maguire.

The representatives were in discussions for almost an hour at the time of writing.

While the block has been lifted for the moment, no lorries have arrived as of yet; however, one empty lorry left the factory premises on the condition that talks commence.

Earlier in the day, members from the Beef Plan Movement joined in the protest with the ICSA, bringing placards and posters of their own.

“We’re just eagerly awaiting them to come out and see,” the ICSA spokesperson said.

“There’s a very determined bunch of people here; they’re up for staying again tonight and whatnot. We’ll see what happens anyway.”