Members of the newly established Beef Plan Group attended a meeting with Mairead McGuinness MEP and first President of the Vice-Parliament last week.
Attendees discussed the cost of production; unfair trading practices and factory feedlots over the course of a 3-and-a-half-hour meeting.
Offal travel restrictions; climate change targets; possible future restrictions; price fixing; cattle data and nomad cattle also formed part of the agenda.
"Trust between farmers and factories is at an all-time low." McGuinness MEP posted on Twitter following the meeting.
Beef Plan 2018-2025 was produced by “beef farmers for beef farmers” consultation among 350 beef farmers; finishers of both suckler-bred and dairy-bred beef and cattle purchasers.
The establishment of the group stemmed from frustration among cattle farmers over factory prices.
Beef Plan Group 2018-2025
The group need approximately 40,000 farmers to row in behind the plan.
Beef Plan 2018-2025 contains a total of 86 proposals across 8 different phases - sustainable price; factories; producer groups; animal health; purchasing groups (phase one and phase two); farm safety; government schemes; farm unions and abattoir.
Having now reached the second stage, Beef Plan Group claims to have 1,200 members, although its membership is growing on a daily basis.
A spokesperson for Beef Plan Group issued a statement to members, following the discussion:
"She [Mairead McGuinness] told us that a lot of work has gone into it and by people that have a lot of knowledge about the sector."
"She [Mairead McGuinness] told us that our plan could act as the pivotal point that could start turning the power back from the factory to the farmer."
On Monday (October 15th), the President of the Irish Charolais Cattle Society - Kevin Maguire - and the Charolais Council confirmed that they are fully behind the new Beef Plan 2018 - 2025.
Kevin Maguire stated that the plan gives all farm organisations the chance to come together for the good of Suckler and Beef farming in Ireland.
He expressed gratitude to Eamon Curley and his team for putting together such a "comprehensive" document.
Kevin also urged all members of the Society to row in behind the plan which is quickly gaining momentum around the Country.
In recent days, Beef Plan Movement has established a Telegram supergroup that has the capacity to hold 40,000 subscribers.
The group is currently using WhatsApp as a platform for discussion.
Farmers interested in supporting the campaign have been asked to send a message to their Beef Plan Movement county contact to request to be added to a county page as well as organising to pay the €10 subscription.
Candidates interested in joining the group can make contact with the following;
- Louth; Dublin; Wicklow; Wexford; Offaly; Cork; Clare; Sligo; Leitrim and Monaghan - Eamon Corley - 0862228246 Meath - Paul Fitzpatrick - 0860501325 & William Fay - 0877629170
- Longford - Emmet Duffy - 0868734292;
- Westmeath - David Whelehan 0862218202;
- Laois - Enda Fagan - 0871927722;
- Kildare - Carmel Lalor 0872378272;
- Carlow - Tommy - 0872412727;
- Kilkenny & Waterford - Alan O’ Brien - 0860568832;
- Kerry - David Murphy 0 0876142761;
- Limerick - Paddy O’ Sullivan - 0878199720 & David Murphy - 0876142761
- Tipperary - Peter Cullivan - 0879184629
- Galway - Kevin O Brien - 0876550198 & Nigel O Kane - 0872107144
- Galway E - Liam Mulloy - 0877872624; Stephen Kanovan - 0872757070; Eoin Donnelly - 0872475968 and Maura Canning - 0876478771.
- Mayo - Declan Molloy - 0860479551 & Aidan McHale 0860770700
- Roscommon - Ollie Naughton - 0868119142; Philip Leech - 0857760732 & David Creighton - 0871237222 & Padraig O’ Connor - 0866027509.
- Donegal - Kieren Logue - 0861507332
- Cavan - Pat Smyth - 0872573683 & Padraig Duffy - 0863379010.