ICMSA furious at Teagasc grid call
Show cost-neutral evidence or withdraw claim demands Cahill
Published 06/04/2010 | 05:00
A major row has erupted between the ICMSA and Teagasc after an assertion by the State body that the Quality Payment System (QPS) for cattle was cost-neutral.
Teagasc officials told a meeting of the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture and Food last month that the QPS was "cost-neutral or better".
ICMSA president Jackie Cahill has called on Teagasc to have the record of the Oireachtas committee amended and the assertion withdrawn unless factual figures to support the claim could be produced.
Mr Cahill accused the farm advisory body of drawing "a conclusion for which there is no basis in analysis or fact".
He said support documentation, which Teagasc provided to the ICMSA explaining their submission to the Oireachtas committee, did not prove the contention that the QPS was cost-neutral.
He accused Teagasc of presenting a "half-baked mixture of wishful thinking and baseless opinion" on the QPS which was "totally unacceptable" from a State-supported body that was statutorily bound to be objective.
When challenged by the ICMSA, Teagasc failed to provide any aggregate figures on the impact of the new payment system.
However, a spokesman for the State research body confirmed the organisation was standing behind the statements made to the Oireachtas committee on March 3.