Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, has signed new EU market transparency rules into Irish law.
This will give effect in Irish law to additional price reporting obligations, which aim to improve food market price transparency in the EU.
EU market transparency rules
The minister said: “I am pleased to have signed this important statutory instrument.”
“I am committed to bringing increased market transparency to all elements of the supply chain.”
“Also, I believe increased price reporting be an important tool, along with other initiatives, including the Unfair Trading Practices (UTP) legislation and support for Producer Organisations, in strengthening the position of primary producers, who are key to the success of our sector.”
He confirmed the DAFM is in the process of drafting legislation to establish the new office of the food ombudsman or equivalent.
This will have a specific role in analysing and reporting on price and market data in Ireland and enforcing the UTP Directive.
“I intend that the new office will build on existing work on market transparency, including the market transparency studies commissioned by my department as part of the work of the Beef Taskforce, which have been completed and published on gov.ie.”
He stated the new changes “build on” existing price reporting obligations to provide more information on prices at each stage of the food supply chain.
“This is an important development, as while there is a large amount of information available about farmgate prices, volumes and stocks, and the prices paid by consumers at retail level, there is limited information about prices at other stages of the chain, for example, the prices at which processors sell product and the prices at which retailers buy product.”
He confirmed the enhanced reporting requirements for Ireland apply to both the meat and dairy sectors.
In advance of implementing these new changes at EU level, the department has provided additional detailed price reporting on the Beef PriceWatch app.
Additionally, as part of the Beef TaskForce, Bord Bia developed a beef market price index model, which it updates weekly on its website.
This index shows the relationship between the Irish beef price and a composite export benchmark price.
This reflects the relative importance of key markets for Irish beef, an index of wholesale and retail prices; and a by-product market indicator.