“Supermarkets must be included in the beef round table proposed by Minister Michael Creed to ensure that all aspects of the beef supply chain are fully examined” says Denis Naughten T.D.
“Minister Creeds intervention, while welcome, must go much further and include the supermarkets who need to provide a justification for the specifications that are being laid down by beef processors” continued the Roscommon Galway T.D.
“Last week, I called on Minister Creed to establish such a beef round table but crucially I said that it must include both supermarkets and representatives of Irish shoppers; not just the beef industry”
“We need transparency on these specifications and the price margins operated right across the beef supply chain”
“The fact is the further the animal goes from the farm gate, the less information is made available on price. That is why beef price transparency right across the supply chain, and the associated specifications, must be the very first issue on the agenda of the Ministers beef round table”
“While there is a large volume of information available on what the beef farmer sells his cattle for at either the mart or meat plant, there is a distinct lack of information on margins in the processing sector or the farmers’ share of the carcass price received on EU markets by processors, including the volumes & value of specific cuts.
“Unless farmers have a justification for these specifications and know what the beef carcass is selling for, including its specific cuts, then how can they determine if they are getting a fair price? This lack of basic information undermines any credibility the industry might have in explaining market trends”.
“Minister Creed must also commit on behalf of Government to fast-tracking through the Dáil next month the new EU law which will ban 16 unfair trading practices covering agricultural and food products traded in the food supply chain,” concluded Denis Naughten.