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Saturday 20 January 2018

Agriculture exports can grow by €12bn

AGRICULTUral exports have the potential to grow by €12bn in the next 10 years, a Government report claims.

The massive increase would be a 42pc jump on export values over the last two years and would help economic growth, according to the 'Food Harvest 2020' report, which was launched yesterday.

And the value of "primary output" products -- raw meat or milk -- could jump by €1.5bn and "value added" products -- such as yoghurt or processed meat -- could increase by €3bn. The report looked at fisheries, food and agriculture.

"We've got to get away from this idea that agriculture is a receding part of our economic life," Taoiseach Brian Cowen said at the report's launch yesterday.

Agri-food and fisheries is Ireland's largest indigenous industry, employing 150,000 people with an annual output of over €24bn.

But the implementation of the report -- which contains 209 recommendations -- will not be supported by new spending but instead by a reallocation of existing funds.

Fiach Kelly

Irish Independent

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