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Jul 24, 2023 | Latest News, Press Releases | 0 comments

ICSA president Dermot Kelleher has said that the national suckler herd cannot be sacrificed for climate objectives. “ICSA does not agree to the suckler herd being sold out as a measure to reduce total emissions.  It is vital to the local economy of every county in Ireland, especially on marginal land and fragmented holdings. Suckler farms are less intensive and most suckler cows are housed in state of the art, roofed-in wintering facilities. Culling the suckler herd is not an acceptable, quick fix solution to the climate targets.”

“The reality is that biodiversity measures are being done and will continue to be done by suckler farmers, but this is contingent on suckler farmers continuing in business. Instead of talk about the suckler herd reducing rapidly we need a coherent and consistent policy to support it into the long-term.”

ICSA Suckler chair Jimmy Cosgrave said that suckler farmers were getting very frustrated at the lack of ambition and urgency in delivering a suckler brand that would give a premium price to suckler beef. “There is real disappointment that meat factories are not stepping up to support the suckler sector by driving on the suckler brand initiative which involves €6 million of state expenditure. The meat factories know very well that suckler beef has huge advantages in efficiency in terms of bigger, better carcases with high meat yields and higher yields of valuable steak cuts.  But suckler farmers are not getting full reward for this. If the meat industry is serious, it must act on the research which shows there is an opening for a high animal welfare, low environmental footprint beef coming from our suckler herd.”   


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