The office of Ireland’s new food ombudsman will be “up and running by the end of the year”, Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue has said.

He told the Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis on Saturday that it will be an office “with real teeth” that will protect farm families.

The recruitment process for a CEO of the office, officially called the Office for Fairness and Transparency in the Agri-Food Supply Chain, has begun.

“I want those who are breaking the unfair trading practices to be afraid of the office.

“It will shine a light on the sector. It will have real teeth. It will protect our farm families,” he said.

In March, the cabinet gave the green light to the establishment of the office.


The objective of the new office will be to promote the principles of fairness and transparency in the agricultural and food supply chain, according to the minister.

It will perform price and market analysis on all sectors of the agri-food supply chain through publicly available data and it will then produce various reports following this analysis and these will be made available to stakeholders and the wider public.

The new office will become the State’s designated authority for enforcing the rules on unfair trading practices in business-to-business relationships in the agricultural and food supply chain.

Price of food

The price of food should allow farmers to be paid at a level that makes sense and the Government has already moved to achieve such fairness in the agri-food supply chain, an Taoiseach Micheál Martin told the Irish Farmers Journal at the National Ploughing Championships.

He said that the establishment of the office would help farmers see such outcomes.

“Without question, the primary producer must be rewarded for the work they do to a level that makes sense and that’s what that commission will endeavour to do,” he said.