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Govt Plan in Jeopardy Unless Nitrates Issue Resolved

by 5m Editor
16 September 2010, at 10:12am

IRELAND - At a special meeting in Dublin on 14 September of the IFA Executive Council, the Irsh Farmers' Association (IFA) sent a clear message to Government that the delivery of the Food Harvest 2020 growth strategy for the agri-food sector is dependent on a positive outcome in the current nitrates review.

IFA President, John Bryan, said that the enthusiastic support of the farming community towards delivering on the Government’s growth strategy for the sector could become unstuck in the nitrates review. He called on Minister Brendan Smith to put the nitrates review at the top of the agenda at this week’s first meeting of the Food Harvest 2020 Implementation Working Group.

Mr Bryan said: "The pigs, poultry, dairy, livestock and grain producers would all be impacted negatively unless the Government secures a satisfactory outcome to address farmers concerns in relation to the nitrates review."

The IFA Executive Council criticised the role of Teagasc in the nitrates review and the Association called on the Expert Review Group to become more proactive in finding solutions to the concerns of the pig and poultry sectors and in securing viable husbandry standards for the spring barley sector.

Mr Bryan said: "The Government and Teagasc must implement the existing animal by-products regulation which allows the movement of all animal manures at the least cost to the sector. It is also essential that the Government understands the devastating economic and social impact which will emerge if the phosphorous provision is not continued, particularly in the regions of Cavan and Monaghan. The future of the malting barley industry and the feed barley sector is also dependent on Teagasc recommending improved fertiliser application rates."