Lisbon vote ‘will hit EU agriculture’

THE decision of Irish voters not to ratify the Lisbon treaty is a serious issue that has a strong bearing on agriculture, according to European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mariann Fischer Boel.

She told a conference in Italy that the European Commission was disappointed by the vote.

“An immediate consequence will be that co-decision on agriculture with the European Parliament will not be introduced on January 1, 2009,” said Ms Fischer Boel.

“I don’t think this is the time or place to reflect further on what will happen in the future. We must now consider carefully how to move forwards in a positive frame of mind.”

Ms Fischer Boel and senior commission officials meanwhile met with IFA president Padraig Walshe, chief executive Michael Berkery and European director Michael Treacy in Brussels yesterday.

Mr Walshe said the commissioner stated that her commitment to Irish farmers was not in any way diminished despite her disappointment at the no vote.

He said he told Ms Fischer Boel that there had been a high turnout of farmers and that 76% had voted yes.

The IFA president told her the no vote was not anti-Europe and that the IFA and farmers wanted to continue to play an active part at the heart of Europe.


Lifestyle

Bryan Stevenson is the American civil rights lawyer who provided the inspiration for the newly-released film Just Mercy. Esther McCarthy spoke to him in IrelandReal-life lawyer Bryan Stevenson on inspiring Just Mercy

So I’ve booked my holidays. And before you ask, yes, I’m basing it around food and wine. I’ll report back in July, but I thought readers might be interested in my plan should you be thinking about a similar holiday.Wines to pick up on a trip to France

Esther N McCarthy is on a roll for the new year with sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes.Wish List: Sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes

They have absolutely nothing really to do with Jerusalem or indeed with any type of artichoke, so what exactly are these curious little tubers?Currabinny Cooks: Exploring the versatility of Jerusalem artichokes

More From The Irish Examiner