Farmers threaten action over prices

GROUPS representing thousands of farmers on both sides of the Irish Sea have warned of possible protest action to highlight their claims that producers are not getting a fair share of the retail price for key products such as dairy, beef and lamb.

Farmers for Action, (FFA), which recently staged a three-day strike in Britain, presided at a summit meeting of the various groups.

About 3,500 British farmers took part in that protest against what they regarded as the low prices paid by retailers for their supplies.

Milk, meat and vegetables were among the goods withheld to put pressure on retailers to ensure producers get a substantial return.

FFA has brought together five other bodies including three from Irelanda for discussions about the future.

The National Sheep Association (NSA), the Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW), the Northern Ireland Agricultural Producers’ Association (NIAPA), the Irish Creamery and Milk Suppliers’ Association (ICMSA) and the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association (ICSA), as well as the FFA, took part.

FFA leader David Handley said there was unanimous agreement on further action to drive home the message that farmers are not receiving a fair share of the retail price for key products such as dairy, beef and lamb.

“One thing that has become clear is that consumers want farmers to get a fair share. In fact, one poll showed that 78% of consumers would be willing to pay more.”

Mr Handley said there is a commitment from all the organisations to co-operate further.

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Karen Walsh

Karen Walsh

Law of the Land

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