'Death knell' for organic poultry in supermarkets

Aideen Sheehan

ORGANIC farmers say that they cannot survive if supermarket chains continue to demand 40pc price cuts from them.

The Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association, which represents around 1,000 producers, said that supermarkets were seeking huge reductions from their suppliers.

They said that organic producers were being threatened with de-listing if they did not comply.

And they urged shoppers to buy local, seasonal, organic food, and to inform supermarket managers that this is what they wanted, and then source it elsewhere if necessary.

Ireland's biggest organic poultry producer JJ Ahern says there is no way he can supply chicken at a price that's 40pc below what he's been getting.

"This will be the death knell of Irish organic poultry in supermarkets," he said.

Tesco -- which Mr Ahern does not supply -- is now selling Moy Park organic chicken from Northern Ireland at €6.81 per kilo down from €13.83 per kilo.

Mr Ahern said that if other supermarkets which he does supply -- Dunnes, Superquinn and SuperValu -- followed suit, his business would collapse.