An ICSA deputation, headed up by the organisation’s President, Patrick Kent, will meet Beef Activation Group Chairman Michael Dowling as a follow-up to the recent beef summit tomorrow, Monday, April 28. The IFA is also scheduled to meet with Dowling on Monday.

“This will be an opportunity for our to re-enforce the key points we made to Minister Coveney last week,” an ICSA spokesman told Agriland.

“We firmly believe that the appointment of an Independent Beef Regulator is the only way to restore confidence within the beef industry at farmer level. And, significantly, we felt that the Minister had softened his stance on this matter, given the comments that he made during the roundtable discussions.

“Next Monday’s meeting will be an opportunity for Michael Dowling to brief us on his latest thoughts regarding the best way forward for the beef sector, as much as it will provide ICSA members with the chance to discuss their latest perspectives on the challenges facing Ireland’s cattle industry.”

“We anticipate that the next full meeting of the next Beef Roundtable will be held of May.”

ICSA will also be keeping a very close eye on the outcome of the upcoming European Elections. It has already hosted a meeting for its members in the West of Ireland, which was addressed by candidates Mairead McGuinness and Marian Harkin.

The ICSA spokesman continued:

“The power of co-decision means that MEPs now have real influence when it comes to agreeing CAP reform issues in Brussels. Traditionally, parliamentary members returned from this country have punched above their weight in Europe, where agriculture and food are concerned.

“And, no doubt, this degree of influence will be maintained. It is very much in Ireland’s interest to have a proactive presence in Brussels and Strasbourg, representing the interests of farmers.

The ICSA has also confirmed that bit will be reviewing its CAP reform policies next week.