Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice has highlighted growing concerns among farmers regarding a deal on beef imports between the EU and South American Mercosur countries.
He said: “There is huge concern among farmers at the prospect of a deal between the EU and the Mercosur Countries from South America on imports of beef. Minister Coveney has to intervene on this issue and Irish MEPs must vote against any such deal this week.
“If this deal goes ahead it will have huge detrimental effects on the Irish beef industry. Irish farmers are subject to a lot of rules and regulations with regard to raising cattle such as tagging for example and now the EU seem to be giving them the two fingers and allowing beef to come in that has not been subject to the same rules and regulations. Do the EU want to drive agriculture out of this country?”
The Roscommon/Galway TD added that he had taken action to prevent the deal going through.
“I have contacted our MEPs to ensure that if a vote on this deal comes up in the next week that they all vote against it. However from research that I have done on this matter it is unelected civil servants and bureaucrats that are deciding the future of the beef industry in Europe and if this happens it will be a disaster,” he said.