Farming is at a crossroads of immense challenges and opportunities, said outgoing ICMSA general secretary Ciarán Dolan.
In stepping down from his position as general secretary of the Irish Creamery and Milk Suppliers Association, Mr Dolan said that farmers are facing considerable complex challenges. He also cited huge opportunities for the sector, notably with the end of the milk quota restrictions due in 2015.
“The challenges and difficulties facing individual farm families and the wider sector have probably never been as demanding or as complex, but the rewards — in terms of the individual and in terms of the sector and the nation — have never been so attainable and so badly needed by both farmers and the country.
“Realising this potential can only happen through careful and rational analysis and I think that has always been the hallmark of ICMSA. I have no doubt but that this traditional strength of ICMSA will continue to grow and prosper into the future.”
Mr Dolan will continue to work within the farming and food sector as a consultant in agri-business and agricultural policy as well as pursuing a career as a barrister.
In wishing him the best in his new career, ICMSA president John Comer said that Mr Dolan had provided an outstanding professional service to the association for more than 33 years and had been centrally involved in every major policy issue affecting farming and the agri-business sector over that period.
“Ciarán’s unique combination of experience, agricultural and economics training, underpinned by professional qualifications in law, equipped him to provide a valued input into policy-formulation and negotiations at local, national and European level. I am pleased to note that as part of Ciarán’s new consultancy business, he will provide specialist advice in relation to policy-formulation to the association,” he said.
Mr Dolan expressed his gratitude to the ICMSA and acknowledged the immense support and friendship he has received from elected officers and the staff of the association over the years.
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