GLOBAL TRENDS NOT BEING REFLECTED HERE AS SHEEP FARMERS CONTINUE TO BE RIPPED OFF

9 DECEMBER 2019

ICSA sheep chair Sean McNamara has said it is stunning that Irish lamb producers are getting almost 70c/kg less than New Zealand producers, even though we have open access to the EU market and have less transport costs than them. “Our sheep farmers are getting ripped off. When ICSA held protests during the summer outside sheepmeat plants, factory bosses told us that markets for sheepmeat were bad. Amazingly now, markets seem to be booming for everybody else.”

“It’s not just the New Zealanders who are ahead of us. According to Bord Bia, UK producers are getting paid around 35c/kg more and in Spain it’s over €1.20/kg more. Much like in the beef sector, it is extremely frustrating that upward trends in global markets are not being properly reflected here. Although Irish prices have picked up in recent weeks, we are doing very poorly at a time when meat prices are powering ahead internationally, helped by demand from China for animal protein.”

Figures from Bord Bia also indicate that prices have remained practically stagnant for the last ten years. “Year after year, our costs are going up so, year after year, sheep farmers are taking more of a hit. We are being ripped off time and time again and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to see how many of us are going to be able to stay going. All we want is a fair price for our produce.”

ENDS