Irish Malt Growers are holding an open meeting for all tillage farmers on Tuesday night to address ongoing issues in the sector.

Bobby Miller, Secretary for the Association, said the meeting was taking place to discuss ongoing issues in the sector.

Miller said malting barley growers received €147/t for their crop in 2014, a figure that is no good to them. “Malting barley growers are very frustrated with how they are being treated.

“We have protested outside Boortmalt and the former President of IFA Eddie Downey promised us last year that he would address our issues.

“Downey did nothing for us and the whole tillage sector is under-representated.”

He said the lack of representation is visible in Food Harvest 2020 and Food Wise 2025.

“The whole sector is underdeveloped, yet has huge potential. The focus in recent years has been on dairying and that is not good enough.

“One acre of tillage ground used to be the best ground in farming to own and that’s not the case anymore.”

Irish Malt Growers was set up in the spring of 2015. Its membership, consists mainly of malting barley growers in the Kildare, Laois, Carlow and Wexford areas. However, the organisation says it is open to all tillage growers across the country.

“Our aim is to bring growers of malting barley together under one umbrella organisation with the primary goal of providing effective representation going forward.”

The meeting will take place in the Clanard Court Hotel, Athy, on Tuesday, January 12 at 19.45 and it’s an open invite to all tillage farmers.