Farming & Fisheries

ICMSA: 'Hens and Stags' prioritised over cows

December 1st, 2023 8:00 AM

By Martin Claffey

Upton's Vanessa Kiely O'Connor makes a point from the ICMSA AGM which took place at the Radisson Hotel, Co Clare while enise Twomey, also from Upton, listens attentively. (Photo: Don Moloney)

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BY MARTIN CLAFFEY

THE government has been accused of prioritising ‘hens and stags over cows’ at the annual general meeting of the ICMSA in Limerick.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was in attendance as ICMSA president Pat McCormack told delegates at the agm that if the Government is serious about climate change, then detailed negotiations and funding needed to be in place to promote a vibrant climate efficient agriculture sector.

He compared rising passengers plans at Dublin airport with the obligations being put on farmers.

‘Taoiseach, I’m no scientist but surely increasing passenger numbers from 30 million to 40 million is going to involve more emissions; it’s going to mean massively increased emissions,’ Mr McCormack said.

He said any drop in volumes of milk produced in Ireland ‘in the most sustainable way on the planet’ will immediately switch to other locations that are not as sustainable – ‘so Ireland loses the money, and the planet gets higher emissions. My question to you is why don’t emissions matter for flights overseas for stag parties and hen nights, but do matter for food production in Cork or Tipperary or anywhere in Ireland? Cows are bad and have to go - but hens and stags are fine and can just work away.’

There was a strong West Cork presence as ver 300 delegates assembled in the Radisson Hotel for the conference.

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