Rathkeale Mart sale a 'disgrace' say farmers
ANGRY livestock farmers in west Limerick have claimed their interests are no longer being served by the Golden Vale Marts Group (GVM) after the sale of the local livestock mart at Rathkeale.
Tom Crosse, manager of GVM Property Sales, has confirmed the sale of the mart at Rathkeale to a solicitor in trust for an undisclosed sum.
No details have been revealed of the identity of the buyer in the sale, which has brought more than half a century of livestock marketing in the town to an end.
Informed local sources believe the mart was sold for around €650,000, considerably less than the €1m-plus price tag that was believed to have been the original guide price.
Local farmers and Limerick IFA members have described as "disgraceful" the decision by the society to withdraw the livestock sales service from the area.
Four local farmers, who were members of the 33-man GVM board, resigned their seats in protest over the decision to close the mart last December.
However, GVM Group chief executive PJ Buckley said the decision to close the mart had been taken following long and detailed consideration.
He claimed throughput of cattle at the mart had fallen off and the mart had been operating at a loss for some time.