31 MAY 2021
ICSA CONCERNED AS REPORTS EMERGE OF FACTORY AGENTS BEING INSTRUCTED NOT TO BUY LAMBS AT MARTS
ICSA Sheep chair Sean McNamara has said factories are playing with fire if allegations that agents have been instructed not to buy lambs at marts this week prove to be true. “ICSA has been getting reports that agents around the country are under orders not to buy lambs at marts over the next week. Tactics like this are underhanded in the extreme and if true are completely anti-competitive and possibly illegal,” he said.
“With supplies remaining tight, it is quite possible that processors are doing this in an attempt to funnel lambs directly into the factories as cheaply as possible and to the detriment of farmers. This is disgraceful as it leaves producers in a much-weakened position, with no option but to accept what is on offer from the factories.”
“ICSA is resolute that farmers must have the freedom to sell lambs at marts and that this is a freedom that cannot be trampled on. Marts are so important when it comes to determining what is achievable for stock and interfering with that process is nothing short of unscrupulous. ICSA will continue to monitor the situation over the coming week, and we will not stand by if evidence of scheming at this level emerges.”