The Clare Chair of the IFA is warning that the entire food chain is set to ‘slow down’ due to mounting costs for farmers.
It comes as concerns have been raised about some farmers ending up even more out of pocket than others due to being locked into fixed price schemes.
The Irish Creamery and Milk Suppliers Association are estimating as many as three quarters of their members may have their milk prices ‘locked in’.
Fixed-price schemes sees farmers guaranteed a minimum price for their produce, allowing them to hedge against market volatility.
However, those on fixed-price contracts are losing money, due to milk prices and input costs currently at a high level.
While some associations have undertaken individual agreements with supermarkets to pass on prices to consumers, there’s concern in some quarters that it’s not being passed down to small farmers quickly enough.
Parteen suckler farmer and Clare County Chair of the IFA, Tom Lane, says he believes beef and milk supplies are going to slow in the near future as a result.
The concerns have led to calls in this county for a ‘complete relook’ on how the global economy is being ran.
Clare-based General Secretary of the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association, Eddie Punch, claims economic policy is now too skewed towards large tech and pharma companies which may be leading to a shortage of workers in the agriculture sector and elsewhere.
The Cratloe beef farmer says a way has to be found to allow farmers to play a key role in both food and energy security measures in the long term.
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