Fane Valley/ABP joint venture must deliver for farmers, says UFU

Wednesday, 4 October, 2017

The Ulster Farmers’ Union deputy president Victor Chestnutt says that the Fane Valley & ABP joint venture with Linden Foods must deliver positive outcomes for farmers.  “News of the deal will be met with mixed opinions from farmers given that there has always been concerns about how much genuine competition there is between processors in Northern Ireland,” says Mr Chestnutt. He made the comments following the decision by the European Commission to approve the joint venture.

The UFU deputy president says, “The combined resources should put them in a better position to improve the efficiency of their operations and the marketing of their products to new and existing markets. However, we are in uncertain times and these companies must realise that the success of their venture will be entirely dependent on whether they can return sustainable prices to the farmers, who supply them with the raw materials they need.”

Mr Chestnutt says processors in the sector need to work hard to offer more stability for farmers. “Processors in other sectors have already shown a willingness to develop long term contracts for farmers and this is something meat processing companies need to take more seriously. The livestock processing sector in Northern Ireland needs to develop new payment conditions which can offer farmers protection from market volatility.”