Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue TD chaired the second High-Level Implementation Committee meeting of Food Vision 2030, which is the stakeholder-led strategy for the agri-food sector, on Thursday 3 March, at which the committee discussed progress on implementing key Food Vision priorities, including through the new Food Vision Environmental Group and the Food Vision Dairy Group, according to a statement published on Gov.ie.
The meeting noted the work of the Food Vision Dairy Group towards producing a detailed plan to manage the sustainable environmental footprint of the dairy sector, with an interim report being due by the end of March, and the meeting also heard that a similar group for beef & sheepmeat will be established next month, according to the statement published on Gov.ie.
Statement By Minister McConalogue
The statement published on Gov.ie included a statement from Minister McConalogue, in which he said, "Food Vision is a landmark for the Irish agri-food sector with the potential to transform our agriculture, food, forestry and marine sectors in the period to 2030, with sustainability at its core. This Strategy is honest and upfront about the challenges ahead. But crucially, it proposes solutions and charts a pathway to sustainability in all its dimensions - environmental, economic and social.
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"Today we also discussed stepping up our ambitions for organic farming and for forestry, which my colleague Minister of State Pippa Hackett is leading on. Both forestry and organic farming are important environmentally but, importantly, they also provide diversification opportunities for farmers and have the potential to contribute to their economic sustainability."
Minister McConalogue was also quoted as saying in the statement published on Gov.ie, "Market access and market development are a key part of the Food Vision strategy for post-Brexit diversification. I am working constructively with Minister of State Martin Heydon who has responsibility in this area. Our key priority is to grow our share in existing markets while developing new ones for all our food offering. I recently led a successful trade mission to the Gulf Region where we focussed on growing our footprint in the region. I was delighted to have received agreement in principle to lift the current restriction whereby Irish beef exports to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia must come from cattle slaughtered under 30 months of age. This was an important step forward achieved as a result of the trade mission."
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