In welcoming the announcement by the Irish Dairy Board of a €2m fund for its dairy farmers, Mr. John Comer, President of ICMSA, said that this was a very welcome and badly-needed initiative from the Irish Dairy Board and it is essential that Co-ops pay this fund directly to dairy farmers as soon as possible given the cash-flow and fodder crisis on farms.
However, in the context of the clear and justified expectations that milk price will increase further for April milk, Mr. Comer said that it is also essential that an Irish Dairy Board ‘top-up’ payment is made to farmers in a distinct fashion and not subsumed in a milk price increase already justified by developments in the marketplace.
Mr Comer said that while the improvement in weather conditions in recent days has brought some relief to farmers, this fodder crisis is far from over and farmers will be dealing with its implications for a long period ahead – both in terms of farm management and financially. The IDB Fund is certainly welcome in this regard and following a meeting with the Irish Dairy Board earlier this week at which ICMSA Dairy Committee spelt out the realities facing dairy farmers at this time, Mr. Comer said that it is his association’s view that the proceeds of the fund should be passed directly to farmers immediately and in a transparent way that makes the IDB payment demonstrably distinct from the price increases already justified and fully expected by dairy farmers. Mr. Comer concluded by expressing confidence that market returns will continue to improve over the coming months.
Ends. 3 May 2013.
John Comer, 087-2057846
Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758
ICMSA Press Office