Tipperary TD, and Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Food and Horticulture, Jackie Cahill has said that the potential loss of 70 jobs today at Schiele and McDonald Mushrooms in Tipperary Town is a hammer blow to the local community, and Tipperary’s agri-business sector.

“This morning 70 employees were sent home with doubts hanging over their jobs.”

“The company have claimed that the sharp drop in the sterling exchange rate following the Brexit vote in June, and the company’s dependence on the English export market, has forced this decision.”

“Only last month, I raised this issue, and called on the Minister to intervene by implementing the exceptional State Aid measure allowing for a short term loan to be provided to the company to cater for liquidity gaps which companies in the Fruit and Vegetable sector can access.”

“Mushroom farmers, in Tipperary, and all over Ireland, are facing this challenge on a daily basis. Their margins have been shredded, and are now in loss-making territory,” added Cahill

“9 in every 10 mushrooms grown in Ireland are exported to the UK. 3,500 jobs are at risk in 60 companies if these challenges with sterling exchange rates continue.”

“The Minister needs to understand that this sector, in particular, requires support to transition to a post-Brexit world,” added the Fianna Fáil Food and Horticulture Spokesperson.