IFA National Livestock Committee Chairman Michael Doran said there has never been a better opportunity or set of circumstances over the last decade to re-open the critically important live export trade for cattle to North Africa and the Middle East and particularly the major Egyptian market.
Calling for a major diplomatic and technical offensive to be led by the new Minister for Agriculture and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Michael Doran said now is the time to move on this issue and capture significant potential benefits for Irish agriculture.
Mr Doran said live trade has the potential to put an additional €100 per head on the value of livestock in Ireland, worth an additional €180m to the beef and livestock sector.
He said because of the dramatic increase in world market beef prices which are up 30% - 50% on this time last year, now is the time for the Government to take action to re-open the international live export trade. He said the market circumstances have never been better.
The IFA livestock leader said reopening the international live export trade would bring much needed price competition to the beef and livestock sector and provide valuable alternative market outlets for Irish livestock. He said “re-opening the International live export trade would be a critical move in terms of ensuring a fairer distribution of prices and margins in the beef supply chain and particularly tackling the unfair shift in the balance of power at retail level”.