Patrick Kent, president, ICSA
The triggering of Article 50 begins a process that could have profound consequences for Irish agriculture, according to ICSA president Patrick Kent.
“Irish beef production is hugely dependent on tariff free access to the UK which has been the highest price market for beef in recent years and which accounts for more than half our beef exports," he said.
Mr Kent has called on the Government to take a very resolute stance with the EU in order to ensure that Irish interests are protected.
"Irish agriculture did not cause Brexit. It cannot be the loser from it. The Government must ensure that the guidelines given to Michel Barnier make tariff-free trade between Ireland and the UK a line in the sand. The Taoiseach cannot compromise on this with the other EU leaders," he said.
The ICSA leader said that the EU needed to get over its obsession with making sure that the UK was the loser from Brexit and concentrate instead on ensuring that Ireland was not the loser from Brexit.