The Beef Plan Movement

  • The Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed is again appealing to members of the Beef Plan movement to accept his invitation and to enter into talks to resolve the ongoing protests outside meat factories.

    A number of meat factories have been forced to lay off staff temporarily as the Beef Plan protest enters its 12th day.

    Meat Industry Ireland has confirmed that nine meat factories have stopped working and some of these plants have temporarily laid off staff.

    The Beef Plan Movement is calling for a meaningful proposal to give farmers a fair share of the retail margin of beef.

    Today is the twelfth day of the protest action by beef farmers outside meat factories in various locations across the country, including Dawn Meats in Ballyhaunis. The farmers are taking the action because of the collapse in the prices that they are securing from factories for their produce.

    Some workers have been temporarily laid off from three Dawn Meats factories.

    150 staff have been let go at the plant on the Kilkenny/Waterford border - but it's not yet known which other two plants are affected.

    The ongoing protests outside more than 20 meat factories nationally is causing major disruption to processing.

    The President of the Irish Farmers Association is calling for an immediate solution to the row.

    Joe Healy says he has sympathy for the staff of Dawn Meats.

    Meanwhile the Beef Plan Movement is calling for a meaningful proposal to give farmers a fair share of the retail margin on beef.

    A spokesperson for the group said there are plans to mobilise further protests as frustration with the ongoing beef price offered to farmers has seen no engagement from the main stakeholders.

    The Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed is again appealing to members of the Beef Plan movement to accept his invitation and to enter into talks to resolve the ongoing protests outside meat factories.

    In a statement from the Minister’s Office to Midwest News this morning, a spokesperson for the Minister states:

    The Minister deeply regrets that efforts by his office to reach out to the Beef Plan Movement to enter a process of dialogue and to temporarily suspend their protests has been rejected.  A round table discussion regarding the current market difficulties involving all stakeholders including Minister Creed, farm organisations, representatives of the beef processing sector, Meat Industry Ireland, the Department and its agencies has been offered to the Beef Plan movement.  In light of the announcement of lay offs in the meat processing sector, the difficult income situation facing farmers with livestock for slaughter and on animal welfare grounds, the Minister is again calling on the Beef Plan Movement to reflect on its position and to take up the invitation to enter into talks.

    While, Midlands-Northwest MEP Luke 'Ming' Flanagan has voiced his support for the farmers at the factory gates.

     

  • Negotiations  among all sides in the beef dispute will resume later this morning.

    Meat Industry Ireland, the Irish Farmers Association and the Beef Plan Movement are among those attending the talks in Celbridge, county Kildare.

    It's after beef farmers, members of the Beef Plan Movement, held pickets earlier this month at meat plants across the country, including Dawn Meats in Ballyhaunis, over the low prices they are securing for their animals from the factories.

    IFA President Joe Healy says for farmers it’s all about price. He said they are not allowed to talk about prices at the meeting due to competition authority law, but he told Midwest News today that prices have not increased since last week’s meeting in Kildare among all involved.

  • The beef talks in Backweston, county Kildare adjourned after more than 12 hours of discussions between the various parties in the early hours of this morning.

    The independent Chairman Michael Dowling is to circulate a document based on the proposals that were put forward.

    The talks began yesterday at 2pm and took place at the Department of Agriculture's campus. The Beef Plan Movement, IFA, ICMSA, ICSA, INHFA and Macra were all at the meeting, plus Meat Industry Ireland (MII) and officials from the Department of Agriculture.

    IFA President Joe Healy said some progress had been made on market transparency and the introduction of a price index.

    There is also a commitment to look at the market specifications that impact on price that exist in the grid.

    It is expected that the talks will re-convene on Thursday or Monday next.

     

  • The Beef Plan Movement says the Minister for Agriculture has failed to deliver during beef talks. The group has rejected the deal put forward last week following lengthy discussions.

    Protests have resumed at a number of meat processing plants since yesterday, but they're not endorsed by any farming representative bodies.

    A range of measures were agreed following discussions between farmers, industry and Minister Michael Creed.

    However, farmers were unhappy that the beef prices were not up for discussion during negotiations.

    The Beef Plan Movement says the proposals don't go far enough to deal with the real price controlling measures that factories and retailers place upon farmers.

    In a statement to Midwest News today Meat Industry Ireland (MII) says it’s is very disappointing that protests have resumed at a small number of beef processing sites around the country since yesterday afternoon.

    Adding that significant efforts have been made in talks between processors and farm organisations over the last fortnight; progress was made on a number of issues raised by farm representatives as well as agreement for ongoing work on several other areas which, if allowed to conclude, should be positive for beef producers. Protests should not pre-empt the outcomes of this work and neither should they undermine it.

    Obviously beef price remains a major talking point since the conclusions of the beef talks last week but beef price was not and could not be discussed during these talks. Furthermore, price is determined by conditions in the market at present which are acknowledged by all as being extremely challenging.

    Midwest News has contacted members of The Beef Plan Movement in Mayo and Sligo today for comment and we are awaiting a response.

     

  • The Beef Plan Movement and Meat Industry Ireland are preparing to meet today, to try and break the deadlock in their dispute.

    Farmers have been protesting at processing plants over the low prices for their animals, but the action's been suspended for the talks.

    Representatives from farming organisations and the Department of Agriculture will also attend the meeting in Kildare.

    The Irish Farmers Association President is calling on retailers to attend the discussions, to outline what they'll do to help beef farmers.

    Joe Healy says farm owners put money into the pockets of shops and supermarkets.

  • Today is the ninth day of protest action by beef farmers outside meat factories around the country over the collapse of beef prices.

    More than 150 members of The Beef Plan Movement were outside the Dawn Meats plant in Ballyhaunis yesterday Bank Holiday Monday evening in the pouring rain.

    The protesters resolve to remain at the gates of the factories appears to be strengthening.

    Today the Beef Plan Movement is calling on vets to refuse to work at meat factories.

    Mayo Fianna Fail deputy Lisa Chambers was on the protest line with farmers yesterday evening in Ballyhaunis, she told Midwest News today that these farmers appear to have no choice, as their income is collapsing.

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    The Beef Plan Movement has rejected the deal hammered out between farmers and industry representatives.

    It says it doesn't go far enough to deal with real pricing control measures that factories and retailers put on farmers.

    The agreement reached last week had dealt with some key issues, however farmers had expressed their disappointment that pricing wasn't addressed.

    Protests are set to take place today at some meat plants in relation to the issue, however the Beef Plan Movement is not endorsing these demonstrations.

     

     

     


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