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EU Agrees on Pork Storage Aid for Ireland

by 5m Editor
12 December 2008, at 9:06am

EU - The European Union (EU) member states yesterday unanimously backed an aid scheme, which will allow the storage of up to 30,000 tons of pig meat for six months at EU expense, according to the European Commission.

This EU-funded storage scheme will involve only meat coming from pigs reared in Ireland on farms not affected by contaminated feed, said the Commission, the executive body of the EU.

"This is a piece of practical action to help support the Irish pork sector at this difficult time," said Mariann Fischer Boel, EU commissioner for agriculture and rural development.

Minister Smith welcomes EU's support

The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD, welcomed the decision, taken at yesterday's EU Animal Products Management Committee, to support the Irish pig industry.

The aid to private storage scheme, which applies specifically to Ireland, has a potential value of €15 million. It will support the temporary storage of meat for up to six months. The amount of aid for this private storage is differentiated according to the type of product and period of storage with a maximum figure of €464 per tonne.

The Minister said that the measure provides tangible recognition of goodwill from the EU Commission and other EU Member States for Ireland's pig sector at this important time. Minister Smith said that, following on from the agreement with the pig processors last night, this aid to private storage scheme is an important support measure that will allow the industry appropriate breathing space in view of the difficulties that may arise in the coming months.