Jackie Cahill appointed as chair of agriculture committee

Fianna Fáil TD Jackie Cahill has been appointed as the chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

The Tipperary TD told AgriLand today (Thursday, September 3) that while he is “disappointed” about not being appointed as Minister for Agriculture, he feels that in his new role he still has a “serious chance to influence policy”.

He said one of the first jobs will be to “do legislative scrutiny on a fair deal bill for farmers that has to come through the committee”.

“That is something that has been in the melting pot for a long time so I think that will be the first priority,” he said.

There are a lot of farm families out there who would like to see that progressed and finalised.

In terms of policy, he said one of his main priorities will be climate change – “and how we can have commercial farming while adapting”.

He added that he will looking closely at how to help farmers through the effects of Brexit, and also looking at how Ireland is faring for the next seven years from the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

Deputy Cahill said he will be coming into the role “very shortly” and believes the committee will be up and running before the end of this month (September) as there is “pressure to do so, as the committee hasn’t sat since last Christmas”.

Charlie McConalogue appointed Minister for Agriculture

Jackie Cahill was disappointed to miss out on the top job of Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine as the role went to party colleague Charlie McConalogue.

The Taoiseach made the announcement in the Dáil yesterday afternoon (Wednesday, September 2), before the newly-appointed minister travelled to Áras an Uachtaráin to receive his seal of office.

McConalogue, who is a native of Gleneely in Co. Donegal, was first elected to the Dáil in 2011 and was appointed as the Fianna Fáil spokesperson on agriculture, food and the marine in 2016.