QPS revamp key demand at beef forum
A revamp of the Quality Payment System (QPS), commitment on future 'spec' changes, and the full implementation of outcomes were all key demands being touted by farm organisations in advance of tomorrow's Beef Roundtable meeting.
With Minister Simon Coveney committing to remain as chairman of the industry forum at the IFA AGM last week, the association's livestock chairman Henry Burns said that it was the Minister's responsibility to ensure that the commitments agreed were followed through.
While Minister Coveney has stated that he will fully facilitate the live trade, farm leaders have demanded that he do more to prevent factories unilaterally charging QPS specifications.
"At the very least, farmers should be given an 18-month lead-in before any changes in age limits or weights are imposed," said the ICSA president, Patrick Kent.
"We've seen all the under 16 month and 420kg carcass weight demands laid down by the beef factories last year evaporate in recent weeks.
"And yet at the time, they assured us that the changes were down to consumer demands," said Mr Kent.
The recent rowing back on those spec changes proves that these were simply a fiction concocted to convince farmers," he added.
Organisations representing beef from the dairy herd, such as the ICMSA, are pushing for the 30- and 36-month age limits to be eliminated.