Agri-food trade is central to Ireland’s contingency planning in the wake of Brexit – Deering

24th June, 2016

Fine Gael TD for Carlow/Kilkenny, and Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Pat Deering, has said that agri-food trade is central to the Irish Government’s contingency planning in the wake of the UK vote to leave the European Union.

“An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, has announced the Irish Government’s comprehensive contingency plans in the wake of the UK vote to leave the European Union.

“I am pleased to see that trade in the agri-food sector is central to this contingency planning. A dedicated unit has been established in the Department of Agriculture to work on the relevant issues and this is a very welcome first step.

“The Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed, has also confirmed that he will convene a consultative committee of stakeholders to ensure a full exchange of information as the negotiations for the UK to leave the EU proceed. This will take up to two years, and so there is time to get this right in the interests of Irish farmers and food producers.

“In the meantime, it is also very positive to note that Bord Bia will provide practical guidance to SMEs to assist them in dealing with marketing challenges and the management of volatility arising in the short term. Additionally, Bord Bia’s London office will immediately engage with Ireland’s leading customers across the UK.

“With the UK as our largest trading partner, it is hugely important that we work to mitigate the effects of this referendum result on trade between the UK and Ireland in the agri-food sector. I know that the Taoiseach and Minister for Agriculture are working on this already and the starting point will be the upcoming European Council meeting on Monday, at which Ireland will have a chance to prioritise its national interests.”