August 7, 2019
Ireland's beef farmers launch protests at processor sites
About more than a dozen beef processors in Ireland were affected by protests launched by a farmers' group which is complaining prices paid by beef processors, The Irish Times reported.
Some members of Beef Plan Movement have called for cattle rearers in the country to withhold movement of their animals to factories as they protested at some 18 beef processing sites between counties Cavan and Cork.
The plants, which are represented by Meat Industry Ireland (MII), expressed readiness to negotiate if the protests - which saw more than 100 participants at one location - cease. Protesters had apparently abused and intimidated farmers, suppliers and employees, MII claimed. The Irish Times also reported traffic jams and road blocks due to the protests.
Irish farmers recently voiced their dissatisfaction over prices paid by beef processors as they claimed that they are getting less than processors and retailers after spending up to two years to rear cattle.
Beef Plan Movement said out of every €10 (US$11.21) spent by the consumer, the retailer gets €5.10 (US$5.72) "for three days' work." Beef processor receive €2.90 (US$3.25) for the same number of days, while farmers are paid €2 (US$2.24) for two years' work.
As such, Beef Plan Limerick's co-chair David Murphy highlighted the need for farmers to receive "the cost of production plus a margin."
For now, farmers are still waiting for the Irish government to intervene, according to Dermot O'Brien, chair of Beef Plan Southwest.
The position of Michael Creed, Ireland's Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, is also in jeopardy if he does not help resolve the dispute, Irish Farmers' Association treasurer Tim Cullinan warned.
- The Irish Times