IFA president Eddie Downey has launched a major offensive at EU level to stall advanced discussions between the EU and the Mercosur Group, particularly Brazil, which could lead to an exchange of offers on a trade deal before the end of March.
The IFA president has held meetings with Catherine Day, director general of the EU Commission; Jerzy Plewa, director general of DG Agri and Georg Haeusler, chef de cabinet to the Agriculture Commissioner.
Mr Downey highlighted the potential devastation that an unbalanced trade deal with Brazil would cause to our beef and pork sectors.
“It makes no sense for Europe to progress this deal with Mercosur, and it would significantly damage the capacity of a TTIP deal with the US,” he said.
Mr Downey said equivalence of standards and end-use control, and proper independent monitoring and testing, have to be central to any future trade deals that increase access into the EU for agricultural produce.
The IFA president has also raised the trade issues with the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney at a meeting last week, and will be meeting the Enterprise Minister, Richard Bruton, in the coming days to highlight farmer concerns.