Michael Dowling, the current Chairman of the board of Kerry Group, is set to preside over the Department of Agriculture’s meat subgroup.

Dowling, who previously held the position of Secretary General at the Department of Agriculture, was announced as Chairperson of the Department’s Meat Sector Subgroup of the Food Wise 2025 High Level Implementation Group at last Thursday’s Beef Forum.

Speaking at the roundtable meeting, the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed said the subgroup will help drive the implementation on the 75 meat actions in Food Wise 2025.

This group will meet regularly and report on its progress to the High Level Implementation Committee (HLIC).

“This is an important step in ensuring that the overall meat sector in this country can reach its full potential as outlined in Food Wise 2025,” he said.

Dowling was one of the committee members involved in the preparation of Food Wise 2025. The document outlines the actions required to ensure that the agri-food sector maximises its contribution to economic growth and exports in an environmentally sustainable manner over the coming decade.

The committee was also tasked with considering employment creation opportunities within the sector and advising on measures that could deliver further jobs.

Beef Forum more relevant than ever

The Minister for Agriculture also said that the Beef Forum is more relevant than ever at Thursday’s stakeholder meeting.

Minister Creed chaired the ninth meeting of the beef roundtable meeting yesterday, where he said he is acutely aware of the difficulties faced by all sectors of the Irish agri-food industry.

“The Beef Forum is a critically important vehicle for engagement between the stakeholders in the sector, including processors, marts, farm bodies and relevant state agencies.

“Given the current challenges facing the sector it is important that the Forum continues to bring together all stakeholders in an environment which allows for constructive engagement.

It will continue to have a vital role to play in assisting the sector to deal with the challenges and opportunities which face it.