Speaking following a meeting with Taoiseach Micheal Martin, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar and other Government Ministers, the President of the ICMSA Pat McCormack said that is “deeply concerned” with the direction of current Government policy in relation to commercial family farming.
“To be clear, Irish farmers recognise their environmental obligations and we are and will respond as a sector but what we will not accept is the effective shutdown of our sector and politicians telling us to diversify when there are no credible alternatives,” Mr. McCormack said.
“ICMSA is very concerned at this stage from climate change to nitrate regulations to veterinary medicine changes that the current Government appears intent on squeezing commercial family farming out of this country. It appears to have forgotten the crucial role played by agriculture in the economic recovery and also its central role in rural Ireland from a social and economic perspective,” he added.
Mr. McCormack said that despite negative comments from vested interests, Irish agriculture has a proud record of achievement from an economic, environmental, social and rural perspective.
“The Government needs to recognise this, work constructively with the sector and ensure that our sector can grow and develop in a sustainable way.
“Farmers understand the climate challenge but the unique position of agriculture and food production needs to be recognised as acknowledged in the Paris Accord, sustainable agriculture needs to be supported with the maximum level of co-funding under CAP Post 2020 and Irish farmers will not accept the Government unfairly undermining our very future based on flawed policies,” concluded Mr. McCormack.