Pa O’Driscoll, Fine Gael candidate for the next general election, has organised a public meeting on the future of agriculture. The meeting will be held next Monday, October 22nd, at 8pm in the Firgrove Hotel, Mitchelstown. The meeting will be addressed by Michael Creed, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine; Dairygold CEO Jim Woulfe; and John Coughlan, IFA Munster Regional Chairman.
It has been a difficult year for farming, and the agriculture industry faces two more challenges in 2019, Brexit and CAP reform. This public meeting will be an opportunity for people involved in the industry to hear from three leading voices in agriculture and the food sector.
Michael Creed has been Minister for Agriculture since May 2016, representing the interests of the agricultural community during difficult times. Since the decision of the UK to leave the EU, Minister Creed has been involved at a European level to lessen the impact of Brexit on Ireland.
Tthe potential impact of a ‘hard-Brexit’ will be particularly felt in the agri-food sector, which is heavily dependent on exporting to the UK. As CEO of Ireland’s largest farmer-owned co-operative, it will be interesting to hear the thoughts of Jim Woulfe on what Ireland and the EU need to do to safeguard this industry.
John Coughlan is representing the members of the IFA across Munster. With reform of the Common Agricultural Policy under discussion for 2020, the farming community are anxious that the interest of Irish farmers are represented well.
A fortnight after the Budget, and days after the European Summit on Brexit, it will be an opportunity to hear a range of perspectives on the future of agriculture.