Charlie McConalogue, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, has stated that immediate support is needed from Europe to help those whose income and ability to work has been negatively affected by the covid-19 pandemic.
McConalogue said that little progress has been seen since the European Agriculture & Fisheries Ministers meeting, which took place two weeks ago (March 25th).
The Fianna Fáil TD said, “The onus was on Agri Ministers and EU Commissioner Wojciechowski to announce the deployment of immediate market support measures and emergency aid funding for vulnerable farm sectors, but this has not materialised.”
“Fianna Fáil has put forward workable solutions that can be implemented at European level to support farmers here in Ireland. We want to see Commissioner Wojciechowski and his officials in the EU Commission immediately implement support measures.”
Deputy McConalogue also asked for flexibility within farm schemes from the EU commission as well as immediately activating Aid to Private Storage to protect the market prices.
“The €25m unused from the BEAM scheme should be deployed immediately to support beef farmers who have seen beef prices drop in recent weeks as a result of a significantly weakened market.”
“Decisive action is needed from the European Commission. It shouldn’t need to be said again that farmers are experiencing cashflow difficulties, a reduction in trade, and growing limitations in how they conduct their operations day to day. European officials need to step up now and support the farming community,” he concluded.