Irish farmers advise consumers to "stock up on beef"
Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers' Association is threatening to halt deliveries to retailers as one of the latest measures adopted in the dispute regarding the price paid for beef. "The big supermarkets will have no beef before the week is out unless there is a major breakthrough in this protest. Retailers can no longer bury their heads in the sand because they have happily colluded in the ongoing squeezing of farmers’ margins to the point now where beef farmers are going bust.
ICSA is calling on retailers to admit that current beef prices paid to producers are unsustainably low. ICSA is also calling on retailers to admit that consumers have no real preference for 29-month beef over 31-month beef. For too long, this 30-month rule has been used as a stick to beat farmers with on price. It is an anti-competitive device used to further weaken the negotiating position of thousands of small scale farmers who are price takers," declared ICSA president Edmond Phelan.
He also called for negotiations until the parts reach an agreement for "sustainable prices". "We have to see if retailers really care about their suppliers. It’s about time we had some fair trade for beef farmers," Phelan added.
Meantime, Irish consumers are advised to stock up on their favorite beef cuts as the products may not appear any time soon in the supermarkets.
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