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IFA Calls on Pig Processors to Reverse Price Cuts

by 5m Editor
27 October 2010, at 9:45am

IRELAND - Following a crisis meeting of pig producers from all over the country that took place in Abbeyleix, the processing sector was left in no doubt that they must move immediately to reverse the recent price cuts to hard-pressed producers.

Chairman of the IFA Pigs Committee Tim Cullinan said that producer anger was going to spill onto the streets unless the processing sector gets serious about returning viable prices to producers, many of whom are on the verge of going out of business.

Pig producers who have successfully persuaded retailers to stock higher volumes of Quality Assured product on their shelves are livid to hear from processors that they have given away the significant Quality Assured premium on the domestic market to facilitate retailer margins and decimate producer returns.

Mr Cullinan said “At today’s price, pig producers have no margin to hide. The losses are mounting and there is no access to the normal routes for credit that traditionally helped producers cope with poor prices. Processors can no longer engage in weak selling practices to gain market share. Irish consumers want Irish meat and this must be sourced from a small number of primary plants so a fair price should be achievable for all.”

He said it was up to the primary processors to secure viable returns in the marketplace for their pig producers. Mr Cullinan accused both processors and retailers of abdicating their responsibilities towards producers. “They cannot continue to take the lion’s share of the margin without serious consequences for primary production in Ireland.”

Concluding, Mr Cullinan said the processing sector must respond positively now to the plight of producers by reversing the last price cut.