Saturday 22 July 2017

Glanbia spent $650,000 to get a say in US’s agriculture policy

Nick Webb

Nick Webb

JOHN Moloney’s €1bn-valued food company Glanbia has spent $650,000 (€510,000) on smooth-talking Washington DC lobbyists over the last five years, as it seeks to influence US agricultural policy.

The Irish stockmarketquoted company paid the money to the Miller & Chevalier law firm. This is to lobby some key officials at the Office of the President, the US Department of Agriculture and lawmakers in Congress and the US Senate, according to recent disclosures. Glanbia has already spent $120,000 on lobbying this year. It splashed out $70,000 last year with $140,000 in 2008.

The food and dairy firm, that has its headquarters in Kilkenny, also paid lobbyists $180,000 in 2007 and $140,000 the year before.

Moloney’s company now has major operations in North America and is the largest producer of American-style cheddar in the region. It also spent nearly €220m buying Illinois sports supplement company Optimum Nutrition, two years ago. Last year, Glanbia’s US operations generated sales of more than €792m and were far more profitable than the Irish businesses.

The company lobbied US officials on the US Farm Act in 2008, and has continued to make representations with regard to President Obama’s agriculture policy, according to the filings.

Miller & Chevalier is fronted by Jon Huenemann, who was an Assistant US Trade Representative under Bill Clinton’s presidency

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