Beef Plan Movement looking to raise €2m to produce and market own beef
The Beef Plan Movement is looking to set up its own co-ops to handle the slaughtering of cattle and market its own beef products.
At a meeting in Holycross, Tipperary, the group's Chairman Eamon Corley said the group is in the process of setting up county and regional groups, which he said would take on the role of working with independent processors to contract kill animals for the group, and then market the beef by region.
He told the room of approximately 200 farmers that Bord Bia "does not live in the world of farmers" and does not take account of farmers cost of production, nor do the meat processors.
Irish beef farmers, he said, produce the best beef in the world, but it is currently sold at a discount in UK supermarkets.
"Our premium product ends up on the bottom shelf of three UK supermarkets and we pay Bord Bia €52m to market that beef."
According to Corley, having a co-op in each region would allow beef farmers take back control.
He said these co-ops with €5,000 shares would require just 200 farmers with two shares each to raise €2m, which he said would be a preferable solution to "begging factories to take our cattle".
"We have customers lined up for our beef, it's up to us to make it happen," he said.