Donegal Senator Pádraig Mac Lochlainn has welcomed the support of his colleagues on the Oireachtas Agriculture Committee for his proposal that the Committee immediately correspond with the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed urging him to intervene in the crisis for Donegal's grain growers.
The Sinn Féin Seanad Spokesperson on Agriculture raised the matter at today's meeting of the committee following representations from farming representatives in the county. In recent days the scale of the crisis for the county's grain growers has emerged.
The Donegal Senator said:"Grain growers have endured poor prices for grain for many years now with no tariffs on imported grain into the EU. It now costs more to produce grain than the price received. This crisis has now been worsened by the poor weather of recent times with local grain growers unable to harvest their crops. Indeed as the IFA has pointed out now, for many it is now a salvage operation.
I raised this crisis today at the Oireachtas Agriculture Committtee. The Committee have agreed to my proposal that we immediately correspond with the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed urging him to intervene and assist these affected growers".
"I also raised the wider issue of access to affordable credit for growers and farmers. I also raised the issue of profiteering by processors, major companies and multiple retailers at the expense of farming families. The gap between what the grower, farmer or producer receives and what we the consumer pay is often huge and we must ensure fairness by confronting these practices".