The European Union Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, announced on Tuesday that beef will not be part of the current Mercosur trade deal negotiations. The news follows a meeting between the Commissioner and NFU Cymru, which was held on Glamorgan NFU Cymru Chairman, Abi Reader’s farm, in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales.
Brussels must do more to help producers ride out the slump in agricultural commodity prices, European farm leaders have warned. Immediate solutions were needed to tackle the “unprecedented” crisis that had hit agricultural markets, said European farm umbrella organization Copa-Cogeca.
The first reactions to the announced Mercosur-European trade deal and exchange of proposals next week have surfaced. The Ulster Farmers’ Union president, Ian Marshall, says the European Union trade deal on offer to Mercosur countries is an ‘unacceptable risk’ to the livelihoods of farmers in Northern Ireland.
Members of the European Parliament discussing the agriculture budget said that compensation for beef farmers that could face Mercosur competition, if a trade agreement is finally reached, “is not enough” and anticipated that “we will not accept sweeteners in this area”.