Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, and Minister of State Martin Heydon met with the IFA late on Tuesday to discuss the ongoing market issues in the pig sector.
Commenting following the meeting, Minister McConalogue said:
“I am acutely aware of the challenges facing our pig sector and I am working to help support farm families and their businesses as much as possible. The industry is undoubtedly under pressure and I, as well as Minister Heydon and the rest of the government, have acted to support pig farmers throughout this challenging period.
“Recently, I announced the Pig Exceptional Payment Scheme (PEPS), with a fund of up to €7 million. The maximum payment under this scheme is €20,000. Payments have started issuing to applicants. I have also met with the banking sector regarding the current situation.
“I have also met with the Irish Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) on the possibility of developing a suitable instrument to manage market volatility.”
Minister of State Martin Heydon said:
“Through the Pig Roundtable and ongoing bilateral engagements we have been in constant communication with all stakeholders throughout this unprecedented period of low prices and high input costs.”
Minister McConalogue continued:
“I thank the IFA for engagingly so constructively throughout this very difficult period for pig farmers. I have received the joint proposal for emergency funding that the IFA, the meat industry and the feed companies have submitted which and I have been examining it closely. I have committed to working with the sector to explore all avenues to offer support for this really important industry.
“Our pig farmers have always been remarkably resilient but I am fully aware of the challenges facing the sector at the moment.”