THE Government and the European Commission have been urged to work together to address the absurd situation that has arisen with milk quotas in Ireland and across the EU.
The call was made by Liam Aylward MEP, Member of the European Parliament Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development at the Ploughing Championships in Athy.
Mr Aylward commented, “The milk quota for Ireland and the threat of super levy is hampering significant growth opportunities for the Irish agriculture sector. It is an unsustainable situation that Irish dairy farmers can produce to meet the EU quota overall but due to inflexibility in the system they will be penalised and their potential for growth held back.”
He continued, “In the context of the growth of agriculture, the dairy sector, in particular as a strong and viable economic sector, it does not make any sense for producers of a high quality and in-demand product to be prevented from meeting market and consumer demands.”
The Ireland East MEP stated that it was clear that a ‘one size fits all’ policy is not working for the milk sector in the EU and Irish dairy farmers should not be held back by a system that is flawed and untenable
“I have contacted the European Commissioner for Agriculture, Dacian Ciolos, to urge him to consider introducing flexibility into the system or for the EU quota to be reallocated but it is essential that the that the Government engage with the European Commission on this issue and find a resolution that will allow Irish dairy farmers to continue to go from strength to strength,” he concluded.