The protests outside beef factories are hurting farmers financially and are damaging international demand for the highest-quality Irish beef, according to the Angus Beef Ireland producer group.
The group, which represents 7,000 Angus beef farmers, has business relations with the factories Ashbourne Meats, Dawn Meats, Dunbia, Foyle Foods, Liffey Meats and Slaney Foods. It certifies Irish Angus beef.
Members of the group typically sell 1,000 cattle each week to Irish and EU customers, but are prevented from selling their factory-ready animals due to the protests.
These protests have gone too far
Gerry Smyth managing director of Angus Beef Ireland said: “Our members are struggling to make ends meet at present. Their cattle are going over weight and fat, and moving out of specification, which means they will lose the bonuses that are typically paid for these high-quality animals.
“These protests have gone too far, hard-won customers for Angus beef may look to other markets if they can’t buy in Ireland, which would do long-term damage to our members.
“No one is denying that times are tough for beef farmers, but these ongoing protests are damaging to everyone. It’s time to find a solution and allow time for the deal agreed over the weekend to try to work,” he said.