The IFA protest outside of the Aldi distribution centre in Naas on Thursday has been labelled a “completely unjustified stunt” by the body representing the factories, Meat Industry Ireland (MII).

It also said that Thursday’s IFA “blockading of businesses” was irresponsible.

“Disrupting normal business operations and harming the livelihoods of associated service providers does nothing to help the market situation.

“It is just two days since the first meeting of the beef taskforce. Every effort is being made to address the many actions in the Irish beef sector agreement.

“Yet, the IFA has chosen to undermine this process by engaging in this illegal blockading activity. This is not giving the taskforce due time,” MII said.

Further activity

On Thursday evening it was mooted that further protest activity would take place over the coming days. This led MII to say that further “threatened blockading activity” was an “expression of internal farm organisation politics playing out in the form of disruption of businesses”.

MII also hit back at comments made by the IFA president Joe Healy on Thursday morning.

“Contrary to comments by the IFA president this morning, the IFA knows that the beef taskforce cannot address price. This is a matter for the marketplace and individual processors.

“MII, on behalf of its beef processing members, engaged constructively in the meeting of the beef taskforce earlier this week and has since communicated to its members the strong views on current cattle prices that were expressed by farm organisations at the meeting,” it said.

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