Sunday 15 September 2019

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Presidential nod for IFA’s Coughlan

Thursday, 12th September, 2019 8:45am

A North Cork dairy and beef farmer has thrown his hat in the ring for this year’s Irish Farmer’s Association (IFA) elections.

John Coughlan, Munster Chairman of IFA has declared his intention to run for president of the IFA. John, who is married to Ann and a father of two, farms near Buttevant and has been an active member of the IFA for 25 years. In this time he has represented North Cork as livestock chairman, county chairman and environment chairman. He was elected Munster Regional Chairman in the last IFA election.

In seeking his county’s nomination, John addressed a large IFA meeting in Cork recently where he outlined his priorities. This included the restoration of farm income by returning prices higher than production costs as well as delivering CAP reform that secures a viable income for family farms.

He also wants to ensure farmers do not carry the burden or costs of climate change measures and will also have a priority the health and welfare of the farm family.

On farm income, John said: “Irish farming has always delivered for the Irish Exchequer. It was the shining beacon during the recent recession. As farmers, we now find ourselves in a serious income crisis. Government initiatives like Harvest 2020, Foodwise 2025 and agricultural sustainability must start with farmer income. We are farmers and we have had enough!

“I know this income crisis will not be resolved immediately, because it is a combination of a cheap food policy in Europe, a lack of transparency in processor pricing, a diminishing CAP payment and profit taking by every other link in the food and business chain, except the farmer. This must finally change; it will be my mission as president to ensure that it does.”

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