Co-ops 'will determine production milk rights'
Future milk production rights were more likely to be based on co-op shareholding than on current supplies, former IFA president Padraig Walshe told a major conference in Cork last week.
Mr Walshe said speculation was unfounded that buying additional quota would give farmers greater production rights post-2015.
He said the price being paid for milk quota at the moment was too high and farmers needed to be very careful.
Mr Walshe told the the Irish Grassland Association (IGA) dairy conference that he saw no justification for the "uneconomic" prices being paid for milk quota.
The former IFA leader, who is also a past president of the IGA, made the comments when taking part in a question and answers forum with seven past presidents of the IGA.
On the question of dairy sector reform, Mike Magan said the current structure of the industry was too fragmented and disjointed.
"There are too many people trying to defend their own patch," Mr Magan said.
He congratulated Kevin Twomey, of the Dairy Discussion Groups of Ireland, on his efforts to promote greater consolidation within the dairy industry.