Food Drink Ireland Calls for New Policy Measures to Ensure Sector Meets Brexit Challenges

b6d484f3-6f78-45ec-8cf5-8d2aee65aa30articleimage.jpg

16 Feb 2017 --- “Ireland’s largest indigenous sector faces substantial challenges in the years ahead in a world that has changed radically in 12 months” said Paul Kelly, Director Food Drink Industry Ireland (FDII), the Ibec group that represents the food and drink sector. He was speaking at the launch of the first FDII Business Monitor report yesterday (15th Feb). 

“On the international front, 2016 saw the risks from Brexit beginning to crystallise for Irish food and drink exporters. We witnessed a drop of €560m in UK exports, the formation of a new and uncertain global trade environment, and challenges to the integrity of the EU Single Market. At home in the domestic grocery market, declining consumer sentiment has given way to a decrease in sales relative to volume growth and this is putting further pressure on business costs.”

Mr Kelly called on Government to urgently implement a range of policy measures to ensure that the Irish agri-food sector remains innovative, competitive and capable of meeting these challenges, and to maximise the sectors ability to seek out new opportunities in existing and new markets. These measures include:

The re-introduction of the Employment Subsidy Scheme and the Enterprise Stabilisation measures which were last applied in 2009-11.

€25m to fund a market diversification and product innovation strategy, which focusses particularly on maintaining UK market share, increasing exports to other EU and international markets and investing more in product development.

A finance package that includes sustainable financing via funding from the Irish Strategic Investment Fund and the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland, state supported trade financing and improved State Aid rules to support the development of scale and the introduction of enabling technologies.

An intense and on-going focus on cost competitiveness led by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation in areas such as labour, energy and insurance.

“With one in eight jobs in Ireland linked to the agri-food sector, it is essential that the Government act now to ensure the protection of these jobs and the future competitiveness of the industry. Failure to do so will result in the damage going far beyond the food and drinks industry in Ireland.”

Related Articles

Business News

Hershey Cutting Calories in Classic Chocolate Bars

24 Apr 2017 --- US Chocolate giant Hershey has pledged that all of its standard and king-size confectionary range will come complete with easy-to-read front-of-pack labels which show the amount of calories by the end of next year. And half of all Hershey standard and king-size confections will be 200 calories or less by 2022, as part of the company’s “smart snacking promise”.

Business News

Special Report: An Industry Update on Sugar Taxes

24 Apr 2017 --- The soft drinks industry at large has been facing the sugar tax challenge for several years now against a backdrop of consumer demand for reduced-sugar products and increasing calls for governments to legislate on the issue. Reformulating a much-loved product by removing or replacing the sugar, while maintaining the familiar taste is a challenge for most companies. But that has not stopped the majority of key players from adding a wealth of no- or low-sugar lines to their portfolios.

Business News

Bunge Acquires Argentine Edible Oil Company

24 Apr 2017 --- Bunge Southern Cone and Aceitera Martínez S.A. have entered into an agreement to transfer all of Aceitera Martínez’s assets to Bunge. A family-run business for more than 60 years, Aceitera Martínez specializes in the production and packaging of edible oils, including sunflower and soybean oil. 

Food Ingredients News

NHS and Leading Suppliers Vow to Reduce Sales of Sugary Drinks

24 Apr 2017 --- The UK National Health Service (NHS) has announced it is “stepping up the battle against obesity, diabetes and tooth decay” by declaring that sugary drinks will be banned in hospital shops from next year unless suppliers voluntarily take decisive action to cut their sales over the next 12 months. 

Food Research

Sunflower Seeds May Pose Increased Health Risk in Many Low-Income Countries

24 Apr 2017 --- Michigan State University researchers have shown that sunflower seeds are frequently contaminated with a toxin produced by molds and pose an increased health risk in many low-income countries worldwide. 

More Articles