The €100m Brexit beef compensation fund announced this week should not be seen as the only solution to beef prices and further funding will be needed "as early as this autumn”, according to the Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA).
The INHFA has welcomed the fund and is insisting that any support measure must include the suckler sector.
INHFA president Colm O’Donnell said the proposed €100m is a good start in providing much-needed support to farmers across the beef sector who have endured substantial losses over the last year.
However, he maintained “this €100m should not be seen as the only solution and believes further funding will be needed as early as this autumn”.
Beef finishers who have been impacted will need to be supported
While the main focus over the last number of months “has been on losses incurred by beef finishers, suckler farmers selling through the marts have also experienced major losses which needs to be recognised and included in this support fund”, he said.
O’Donnell said that these farmers are at least €100/head back on where they were in 2017 and this is the minimum payment they need.
“Beef finishers who have been impacted will need to be supported and we have no problem with this. However, we also need to consider the fact that 20% of finished stock comes from factory controlled feedlots which are seen by many as a mechanism to deflate the price.”
Plans now need to be finalised as soon as possible to get this money out to farmers, he said.
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