Meat factories warn of ‘catastrophic’ collapse of meat sector from no-deal Brexit
- Factories warn of price collapse and plant closures
- Irish meat industry sends 320 refrigerated trucks of meat to Continental EU markets weekly
Irish meat processors have issued a warning of the 'catastrophic' impact a no-deal Brexit would have on the sector.
In a document, submitted to members of the Oireachtas Agriculture Committee and seen by FarmIreland, Meat Industry Ireland (MII) said A ‘hard Brexit’, with the potential imposition of very high tariffs on trade with the UK, together with additional transport costs, delays at borders, disruptions to logistics, as well as unforeseen threats arising from potential regulatory divergence, will present a massive challenge for the sector.
"A No-Deal (hard) Brexit outcome would be catastrophic for Irish agriculture and our food export business," the organisation warned.
MII warned that in a hard Brexit scenario where Ireland is, de facto, excluded from the UK market, the likelihood is that an immediate crisis will happen.
"The impact on EU markets will be immediate, with surplus product being exported onto already well-supplied markets resulting in a price collapse," it said.
MII warned that it is inevitable that producer prices will fall as a direct result of the loss of UK market share.
It said where the best returns are currently obtained, and, in the absence of viable substitute markets, there will be no refuge from declining returns in a distressed market.
"In an oversupplied market of the scale envisaged, processing companies will quickly examine and respond to the new market circumstances while taking steps to bring operational capability into line with new market realities.