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Farm Minister praised as North avoids EU ban

6 August, 2007

Sinn Féin Agriculture spokesperson has praised the Farm Minister Michelle Gildernew after it was confirmed that the EU ban on British food imports, following the confirmed outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease in England, will not hit our local farmers in the North.

Mr McHugh said:

"The 'Fortress Ireland' approach adopted by Michelle Gildernew has paid immediate dividends in that our local industry will not be affected by the EU ban. The ban on livestock and fresh meat will only apply to Britain.

"Too many times in the recent past our local farming industry has been adversely affected by the link with British farming. It is time to break that link once and for all.

"In this instance the swift action taken across Ireland appears to been beneficial but in other areas there is being a high price paid by our local farmers because of the approach in London to farming, particularly at EU level.

"In the time ahead we need to look much more closely at how we can benefit from further cutting the links with British farming and British government agriculture policy and at how we can benefit from the expansion of the all-Ireland approach to agriculture." ENDS

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