THE French government is to confer the Commandeur Merite Agricole honour on Ireland East member of the European Parliament Liam Aylward.
It is the highest honour Paris can confer on a foreigner in recognition of work in promoting agriculture and the food sector across the EU.
French agriculture minister Michel Barnier, president of the European Council of Agricultural Ministers, will present the award at a ceremony in Paris on December 4.
Mr Barnier said Mr Aylward is one of the most highly respected EU legislators in the field of agricultural matters.
“The French government has given this award to him because of the leadership he has shown on key agricultural issues in Europe over the past four years, including leading the way in Europe in reforming the sheep farming sector,” Mr Barnier said
Irish farm bodies, beef and lamb processing companies, French importers of Irish foods and the Irish Government will be represented at the presentation ceremony
A former minister of state, Mr Aylward’s recent report to the European Parliament on reforming the sheep farming and lamb processing sectors was widely praised.
He has been a very strong supporter of legislation which fully protects the EU food chain.
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