A Mayo TD is calling on Government to bring forward the GLAS balancing payment, as one measure to ease the current financial pressure on farmers.

    The Fianna Fail deputy leader Dara Calleary says farmers are being hit by a number of challenges at present - including the drop in the demand for beef and lamb - and a major European response is needed to ensure the sector remains viable after the Covid-19 crisis.

    Deputy Calleary also says there are steps the Irish Government can take to ease cashflow pressures on farmers.....

  • Dawn Meats has been granted permission to bring attachment and committal proceedings against a protester at a meat plant, back to the High Court on Friday.

    It's after farmers continued to block access to factories despite a high court injunction stopping them from protesting.

    The pickets have stemmed from a row over beef prices.

    Dawn Meats said it was forced to return to the High Court today to request the enforcement of the injunction and that similar action may be taken against further individuals.

    Injunction were also granted to Slaney Meats and Kepak banning protests at their factories.


  • Commenting on recent claims in relation to the share of retail beef price received by producers, Meat Industry Ireland (MII) has issued a statement to Midwest News saying “It is important to set the record straight on this issue.  Suggestions that farmers receive 20% of every €10 spent by consumers of beef in retail outlets are inaccurate.  In fact, the producer share of retail beef prices is closer to two-thirds.”

    Meat Industry Ireland’s statement goes on to state that “based on independently published data on Irish retail sales prices, on the mix of beef cuts purchased by Irish consumers and the yield factors involved, the actual price paid to beef producers represents 63% of the average retail beef price on a carcase weight equivalent basis. This can be independently verified.”

    “The same pattern of producer share of retail market price is evident in other EU markets where Irish beef sales predominate (UK; Germany; France; Holland).” 

    The statement concludes, “Independent commentators recognise that there is a very weak beef market, primarily caused by a very poor demand, across all major export markets as well as the uncertainty created by the risk of a No-Deal Brexit in two months.  While no one disputes that current market returns have driven cattle prices to a 5-year low, inaccurate statements on share of return from the marketplace do not help to resolve the critical challenges faced by the entire beef sector.”



  • Minister Michael Creed appeared before the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Agriclture, Food and the Marine yesterday, to brief the Committee on the fodder crisis.

    The meeting was requested by Mayo Fine Gael Senator Michelle Mulherin last week, during the parliamentary recess, in order to address the issue.

    Minister Creed confirmed that he will be meeting with the main banks in order to ensure that farmers can access credit during this time and also confirmed that the €1.5m limit on the fodder support scheme would be raised, should it be necessary to continue the support.

    Members of the committee also raised the issue of inspections and the added pressure that they could bring at this time. It was suggested that a case be made for inspections to be waived under the fodder shortage is resolved. Flexibility in relation to credit was also cited as vital and meal vouchers were another subject raised as an option for farmers who fields are still too water-logged for grass to grow and who cannot put their animals out to grass yet.

    The Committee members welcomed the assistance measures announced by the Minister, which include extending the closing dates for various schemes and greater operational flexibility for road hauliers engaged in the transport of fodder.

  • Minister for Agriculture Food and the Marine Michael Creed announced today that he has extended the duration of both the Fodder Import and Fodder Transport support measures for an additional week. These measures which were scheduled to conclude on Monday April 30th will now run until Monday 7th May.

    The Minister said ''While the weather has improved and grass growth continues to improve significantly, there are farmers in some parts of the country who still need to locate fodder for their animals. Having reviewed the situation and listened to the views of members of the representative fodder group I established in March, I have decided that extending the closing date for the two measures for one further week is appropriate”.

    Demand for fodder has reduced significantly. However, there remain some areas where land is not yet sufficiently dry to graze livestock and there is still a short term demand for fodder.

    Concluding, Minister reaffirmed that ‘these measures are effectively addressing issues around fodder availability”.

    The Minister reminded farmers that the animal welfare emergency assistance continues to operate where animal welfare is seriously at risk via the emergency helpline numbers – Call Save  0761 064408 or phone 01 6072379.


  • A new telephone helpline has been opened today, to assist farmers with their queries in relation to Covid-19 restrictions.

    Agriculture Minister Michael Creed has put in place a dedicated helpline for farmers to seek advice so they can continue to fulfill their essential role in maintaining the food supply chain.

    The helpline number is 076 - 106 4468 and will be open Monday to Fridays during office hours.


  • A new revamped Common Agriculture Policy is set to favour small and young farmers. 

    The European Commission has announced its proposals for 2021 to 2027 which include a new agri-environmental scheme and a 2 percent fund for young farmers. 

    It says the plans is to modernise and simply the CAP with a budget of 365 billion euro. 

    European Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan admits there will be less money available to farmers but says there's greater flexibility.

  • Over 1200 farmers are expected to attend the Irish Farmers Journal Beef Summit in Co Galway next week.

    The Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed, representatives from the Department of Agriculture, Bord Bia, Teagasc, and Meat Industry Ireland are among the speakers who will address the conference at the Shearwater Hotel in Ballinasloe next Thursday 9th May.

    The summit is being held at a time when the Irish suckler beef industry is at a critical juncture, with many farmers looking at alternative options of farming.

    The Irish Farmers Journal says the event will bring togther Ireland's beef industry policymakers and power players, and will hep farmers make plans for the future.


  • Protests are continuing outside 14 factories today despite reports saying a consensus had been reached over the weekend.

    The Independent Farmers of Ireland (IFI) issued a statement last night saying they neither accepted nor rejected the proposals meant to end the ongoing beef dispute.


    Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed claimed all the parties in the dispute approved the agreement which will see increased prices for beef farmers and reform of the sector.


    However in a statement the IFI said, “Despite reports in the media that this document was signed off by all parties, these reports are not true.”


    The deal will only come into effect when pickets and blockades by farmers at meat factories are lifted.


    Farm organisations will now work to persuade the farmers to give up their protest.


    Farmers protesting outside Dawn Meats in Ballyhaunis say they are not happy with the outcome of the talks as the base price wasn’t addressed.

    They say they will have a meeting outside the factory gates in Ballyhaunis tonight at 9pm to discuss their next course of action.

  • A recent statement by the Minister for Agriculture that would see farmers held responsible for wildfires they have not lit could result in farmers restricting access to their property, which would clearly impact on hill walking.

    That’s according to the Mayo Chairman of the Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association.

    Gerry Loftus has called on Minister Creed to retract the statement.

    He says hill farmers in Co Mayo have payments held up due to a fire which someone else was convicted of lighting, but the farmers are the ones suffering.

    The Mayo Chair of the INHFA says the Minister’s action could result in closing the hills to walkers, as farmers will need to assess what public access to their property means.

  • A sit-in protest by farmers at the Department of Agriculture ended late last night, after a deal was reached between the IFA and the Minister.

    The farmers were demonstrating against the practice of 'trimming'.

    It involves meat factories trimming animal carcasses before they're weighed - and means farmers get paid less than they should.

    The Department of Agriculture has agreed to name and shame meat processors who carry out trim offences.

    Affected farmers will also be compensated.



  • The Beef Market Taskforce is to meet this morning.

    It was due to meet in October but was called off due to protests, while last week hundreds of farmers took to the streets of Dublin - grinding parts of the city centre to a halt.

    Farmers and representatives of the beef industry are expected to meet today to discuss the ongoing issues regarding the price of the meat.

    It's due to begin at 9am.



    Up to one in four skin cancer deaths in Ireland are among those who work outdoors.

    The HSE's warning farmers and builders to make sure they take steps to protect themselves from the sun's UV radiation.

    It's expected the 11,000 cases of skin cancer here every year will more than double by the year 2045.

    The HSE's Dr. Triona McCarthy says farmers and builders are at a higher risk of getting it and should minimise their sun exposure between 11am and 3pm daily, wear long sleeve tops, wide brim hats and apply sun protection cream.