Movement to help Dairy Farmers welcome but not sufficient – Matt Carthy MEP
Commenting on the decision taken by the EU Farm Council yesterday to extend the milk intervention deadline, Sinn Féin MEP for the Midlands North West and member of the European Agricultural Committee, Matt Carthy has welcomed the recognition by Agriculture Ministers that the abolition of Milk Quotas is having a huge impact on small dairy farmers in particular and has called for the Commission to intensify its efforts.
“I welcome the decision taken by the EU Farm Council yesterday to extend the intervention deadline. It is a clear recognition of the difficulties currently facing dairy farmers as they adjust to the end of milk quotas.
“I also welcome the comments of Minister Simon Coveney, who has this week called for the European Commission to look at the volumes and price paid for intervention so that there is a real safety net for farmers.
“Sinn Féin has consistently called for an increase in the intervention price and I had proposed an amendment to the Dairy Package Report, which would set the intervention price at 27c per litre.
“With Teagasc reports outlining the fact that the cost of production of a litre of milk at 25c per litre, the current intervention price of 21c per litre is not sufficient.
“I welcome the movements by the Council to acknowledge the difficulties facing dairy farmers but the reality is that more needs to be done at a practical level to provide real supports to farmers as they struggle to adjust to ongoing price volatility.
“I will continue to work with my colleagues on the European Agricultural and Rural Development Committee to press the European Commission to act in a meaningful way to address the difficulties facing dairy farmers and ensure the sector thrives into the future.”ENDS