The Dealer is often at loggerheads with those mandarins in the Department but every now and again a good egg pops up.

One of them was Breffni Carpenter, or Breff, as he is known.

Few Irish farmers might know who Breff is but he has had an enormous role in protecting farm incomes, especially in his time working in Europe.

Closing in on 42 years’ service in the public sector, Breff has decided to take the half day and retire.

He started off life in the Department of Justice in 1979 before joining Revenue and finally coming into the Department of Agriculture in 1993.

Portlaoise office

He led the establishment of the Portlaoise office – that’s where all the real decisions are made about schemes and payments.

He was the agricultural attaché from 1998 to 2003 before being the agriculture rep in Brussels from 2014 up until just last year.

He returned and gave incredible insight and work into the trade division.

Mover and shaker

A mover and shaker par excellence, Breff kept Ireland in and out of trouble at the right times.

Operating away from the limelight but with huge influence, Breff always had the best interests of Irish farmers at heart, securing the best outcome for farmers in any trade talks of CAP talks.

The Dealer hopes Breff, Martina, their children and grandchildren enjoy his well-deserved retirement.