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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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‘I believe with the support of farmers right across the country, we will make a real difference’ – Shine

The Irish Family Farm Group, which is being driven by Donie Shine, has been contacting farmers right around Ireland to support an inclusive farm lobby group.

Having previously campaigned for the scrapping of the four-movement rule, Shine and the IFFG have became known to farmers – with meetings held in marts nationwide.

Challenges in 2021

However, various challenges and obstacles stalled the progress of the group. The Covid-19 outbreak has been a significant one of those in 2020.

Despite this, Donie Shine has been working away in the background, assembling a support team to drive the organisation on in the coming months.

Commenting on the developments, Shine said:

Shine and his friend, Tommy Gunning from Co. Galway, established this group to “properly represent small and medium-sized family farms”.

“Sadly, Tommy passed away in July 2019. He always believed the group could succeed in its goal of securing better conditions for farmers, across all sectors. So, I have continued pushing the group.”

“Having liaised with farmers up and down the country, industry personnel, department officials and ministers in recent years, I believe this group has the capabilities and the contacts to succeed.”

“Despite Covid-19, we have been working on a number of projects in the background – which will hopefully bear fruit in the coming weeks and months.”

Plans for 2021

“On foot of this, the group has begun contacting farmers to seek their support and backing moving forward. As always, the priority of the group is to represent small and medium-sized family farms and to give them a voice which will be clearly heard.”

“We are also continuing with the campaign to scrap the four-movement rule, which is a whip used to beat farmers with.”

“It is important that farmers get the best price available for their produce, particularly given the quality standards which they adhere to in this country.

“Moving forward, we will be asked farmers to pay an annual membership fee of €25 to cover administrative and organisational costs.

“We have enlisted a company by the name of Tradeforus purely to assist with the administration of the group. IFFG members will have access to its platform as a result of this arrangement.”

Farmers interested in joining the group can call 022-33110 or email [email protected].

Concluding, Shine added: “2021 will be a big year for the Irish Family Farm Group. I believe with the support of farmers right across the country, we will make a real difference.”

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