The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has officially confirmed that the beef taskforce meeting has been suspended following “altercations outside Agriculture House” earlier today, Monday, October 14.

Members of the taskforce were prevented from attending the meeting, the department added.

Minister for Agriculture Food and Marine, Michael Creed, condemned this morning’s incidents. He added:

“It is in the interests of everyone involved in the beef industry that the work of the taskforce goes ahead.

The taskforce’s remit is to monitor the implementation of the actions arising from the agreement reached on September 15 and offers the most viable platform for strategic engagement with key stakeholders.

“It was a great pity that farm representatives were not in a position to air the legitimate concerns of farmers at the taskforce,” the minister said.

Meanwhile, Meat Industry Ireland (MII) has said that its delegation was “physically and aggressively prevented” from attending the first meeting of the Beef Market Taskforce by protesters.

In a brief statement on the matter, the Ibec representative group said:

“A delegation from MII this morning sought to attend a meeting of the Beef Market Taskforce at the invitation of the chairman and the Minister for Agriculture.

On their arrival they were physically and aggressively prevented from doing so by protesters.

More to follow.