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ICMSA demand to know who’s setting the National Climate Strategy: Government or environmental quangos?

Reacting to the announcement that Friends of the Irish Environment has launched a High Court challenge to the Government’s Food Vision 2030 Strategy, ICMSA President, Pat McCormack, said that it was now imperative that what he called “the duly elected Government” proceeded with the plan. Mr. McCormack said that the actions of these extreme groups was effectively blocking the possibility of any progress and holding the national interest hostage.

Mr. McCormack said that every and all parties to what he said was “an existentially important project” had to accept that they would not get everything that they sought. He cited his own organisation’s attitude to aspects of the Food Vision Strategy and the threat to commercial farming it represented.

“We are justifiably extremely anxious about the negative consequences that the Food Vision strategy has for Irish farming and primary food production. But we have to work with it as best we can and it’s high time that others – on the ‘environmental’ side of this debate – finally grasped the fact that there has to be ‘give and take’ on this. They cannot be allowed dictate to everyone else how this project is going to be developed,” said the ICMSA President.

Mr. McCormack said that it was with the greatest difficulty that farmers in general – and dairy farmers in particular – were being convinced that there was not a specific anti-farmer agenda at work here. The kind of attitudes and latitude afforded unelected and unaccountable bodies like Friends of the Irish Environment was not helping win the support of farmers for Government policy and FIE would have to be told “bluntly” that the national policy had now been decided. He said that if FIE wanted to change that then they should put themselves forward as candidates in our elections.

“I can’t overstate the importance of this: either we have a Government that weighs-up all the arguments and makes a decision in the national interest or we just give up and allow ‘niche’ extreme groups to continue mounting legal challenges to properly decided policy and have the costly and unnecessary resultant delays. Either the Government decides or the environmental quangos do – it’s time for that question to be answered,” said Mr. McCormack.

Ends       1 March 2022

Pat McCormack, 087-7608958

President, ICMSA.


Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758

ICMSA Press Office