Fianna Fáil Cllr Bart Donegan says the current fodder crisis has been allowed to escalate since September and action by Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney is long overdue.
At yesterday’s meeting of Cork County Council, a number of Fianna Fáil Councillors put forward motions calling for an emergency debate on the fodder crisis, which was taken by the Mayor.
Cllr Donegan commented: “The fodder crisis didn’t start this week or the week before. It’s been brewing since this time last year.
“It was first brought to the Minister’s attention by Michael Moynihan TD in the Dáil last July when he raised concerns about farmers being unable to cut silage. This was ignored.
“I brought a motion to Cork County Council in September last year calling on the Minister to set up a helpline for farmers who were under severe personal strain as a direct result of the fodder crisis. This was also ignored.
“From what I can see, this Minister takes the “live horse and get grass” attitude. But unfortunately, the early Spring that farmers were hoping for never came and now we find ourselves in an unprecedented crisis.
“And if the Minister continues to sit on his hands and do nothing, the Agriculture industry in this country will be devastated. If Minster Coveney actually sat down and listened to farmers who have been affected he would know just how desperate this situation has become.
“The more this Minister dithers the worse the crisis gets, action is needed now.”