The Irish Association of Pigmeat Processors (IAPP) has stressed the need for the Irish pigmeat sector to meet the deadline of 1 January 2013 for new sow housing regulations.
"Not just from a regulatory perspective but equally important, from a marketplace perspective, it is important that the Irish pigmeat sector meets the deadline,'' stated Cormac Healy, director of IAPP.
"It is clear from Brussels that there will be no delays or derogations and that enforcement will be pursued vigorously."
He was speaking after this week's EU Council of Agricultural Ministers meeting at which a progress update was given by member states representatives.
"The real implications of the new sow housing rule on the marketplace will not be clear for some time and will obviously depend on the level of compliance across the EU and the impact on the level of production.
"Nevertheless, Ireland's only option will be to have pig farms that operate from a position of full compliance.
"While there is a tight time-line remaining, significant progress can be made in the housing conversion process, but the sector cannot afford to be complacent."
He called on the Department of Agriculture to clarify any outstanding issues associated with the grant scheme and urged the banks to work with pig producers to put realistic financing arrangements in place which would allow this critical long-term capital investment to take place.
Source: Argentine Beef Packers S.A.
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