Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Agriculture Michael Moynihan has called on the Government to introduce fair trade legislation that will put in place a mandatory code of practice governing the relationship between retailers and suppliers.  
 
Deputy Moynihan highlighted the urgent need for fair trade legislation in the Dáil last night, as he introduced a Fianna Fáil Private Members motion on Agriculture.
 
Deputy Moynihan said, “Thousands of farmers are protesting in Dublin today to raise awareness of the need for fair trade legislation. This protest is in response to the raid on the head offices of the IFA by the Competition Authority last week.  The IFA was raided under competition legislation because it was trying to protect prices for producers.  
 
 
“This is further evidence that fair trade legislation is long overdue. It behoves all of us to ensure that the laws which have been promised for so long will be brought before the Dáil as soon as possible.  The farming community has been waiting for too long for a time when multiples do not enjoy such power to drive prices down.
 
 
“Fianna Fáil has introduced a Private Members Motion on Agriculture which will be voted on in the Dáil tonight.  It is the first substantive debate on the agriculture sector of the 31st Dáil. As part of this motion, we are calling on the Government to introduce fair trade legislation that will establish a mandatory code of practice governing the relationship between retailers and suppliers. We recognise the importance of ensuring that there is a balanced relationship between the various players in the grocery goods sector, particularly given the importance of this sector to the national economy.
 
 
“The dairy farmers’ share of the retail price of liquid milk has fallen from 42% in 1996 to 26% in 2009. However, the Competition Authority’s raid last week indicates that its key concern is to do with the price of milk for consumers as opposed to producer exploitation by large retailers.
 
 
“It is Fianna Fáil’s mission to ensure that the needs of farmers and food producers are not forgotten as we push for affordable prices for consumers,” concluded Deputy Moynihan.