A NEW opinion poll shows that more than 80% of farmers will vote yes in the Lisbon referendum.
The Farmers Journal/IFA poll, carried out by Red C, indicates that 69% of respondents will vote yes, 15% no and 16% are undecided.
When the undecided figure is excluded, 82% of farmers will vote yes on October 2. Among those likely to vote, the Yes vote is even higher at 84%.
Padraig Walshe, IFA president, said the overriding reasons for voting yes have struck a chord with farmers, who have always been supporters of the EU.
“They include access to a market of 500 million consumers, the stability provided by the euro, the single farm payment, and the benefits to farmers and the rural economy,” he said.
Describing the findings as encouraging, he said the IFA had been one of the first national organisations to give a unanimous recommendation for a Yes vote.
The poll was conducted over three days last week of 1,000 farmers, giving a margin of error of ±3%.
Meanwhile, the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association said its national council had unanimously endorsed the treaty.
Jackie Cahill, president, said a Yes vote is a vote of confidence in both Ireland and Europe and would signal Ireland’s determination to retain full and active membership of the EU.
“Virtually no element of the No camp is dependent upon, or even interested in, international trade and marketing,” Mr Cahill said.
“Farmers should not leave their future in the hands of these people and the simple way of ensuring that the No camp do not lead the Irish nation into a dead-end is to vote Yes. It’s that simple.”
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