Simon Coveney seeks EU short term relief for farmers

Europe could use the flexibilities available under exceptional measures to temporarily increase the threshold prices for butter and skimmed milk, said Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney.

Mr Coveney is also proposing the EU could restore Aids to Private Storage for Pigmeat.

He has met with EU agriculture commissioner Phil Hogan and French agriculture minister Stephane Le Foll to discuss measures to ease pressure on EU farmers.

He said adjusting the dairy threshold prices would provide a realistic floor price.

This could provide a positive market signal and a more realistic floor price over a period of acute difficulty for farmers, he said.

“We are all aware primary producers are extremely vulnerable to downward fluctuations in commodity prices and increases in input costs,” said Mr Coveney.

“The current market dynamics are causing particular difficulties for dairy and pigmeat farmers in Ireland and elsewhere.

“There is no question of reverting to a Common Agricultural Policy focused on market management.

"But, it is precisely to alleviate the worst effects of volatility that the Common Market Organisation Regulation provides for the full range of market support measures as a safety net.”

Mr Coveney is also proposing the restoration of Aids to Private Storage for cheese, and the use of superlevy revenues to support the market for dairy products.

He is also seeking the use of exceptional measures to promote the consumption of dairy and pigmeat in EU and other third country markets, and increasing this October’s advance payments to 70% to alleviate immediate cash flow difficulties.


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Frits Potgieter is General Manager with Muckross Park Hotel and Spa.You've Been Served: Frits Potgieter, Muckross Park Hotel and Spa

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