Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue TD, has confirmed that he supports abolishing the levy farmers pay to Bord Bia for cattle exported and brought to meat factories for slaughter.
Deputy McConalogue stressed that beef farmers are at the “pin of their collars” with the downward spiral in beef prices and the severe hit on incomes they have taken over the past 12 months.
“The government have also failed to address suckler incomes which averaged at a paltry €8,000 in 2018. The delivery record to date has been suspect with a government that is losing touch with people in rural Ireland and their daily challenges.”
“It has been apparent as the year has gone on that Fine Gael just does not understand rural Ireland.” he added.
Close to €4m in levies
He outlined that in 2018, farmers paid close to €4million in levies to Bord Bia for cattle exported or slaughtered.
“Meanwhile, the exchequer contribution to the state agency has been increased over the last three years to carve out new export markets, arising from Brexit.”
“Given this, and as a signal of solidarity with beef farmers, I will be supporting the policy to abolish this levy farmers pay on cattle and put this forward as party policy in the upcoming general election campaign,” the Deputy concluded.