MEP expresses deep concern at EU decision on ABP-Slaney merger
Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy has expressed deep concern over the decision by the European Commission’s Competition Directorate to clear the way for the ABP-Slaney Merger.
Commenting on the decision, Carthy said:
“In its submission to the European Commission, ABP, Fane Valley and Slaney Foods claimed that this merger was “needed” in order for them to complete on intensely competitive international markets.
"At no point in their submission did they make reference to or try to justify the effect this merger would have, on the Irish market. It appears today that the Directorate for Competition has accepted that rationale.”
“Small farmers in Ireland who will feel the squeeze of this market concentration will hardly be consoled by ABP/Slaney’s 'strategic economic rationale' that they will now be able to faster penetrate international markets.
"The problem is at home, where the deal will result in 30% control over the country’s cattle kill, and 40% of the country’s lamb kill.”
“The speed at which this decision was taken is also worrying, coming only five weeks after official notification to the Commission.
"Given the extensive efforts and research put into this issue by farming organisations, including a 132-page Independent Report commissioned by the IFA, five weeks hardly seems long enough to assess the nuances of the market situation.”