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Council urges Minister Creed to fully oppose South America trade deal

CORK County Council will write to the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed urging him to fully oppose the European Union trade deal with the Mercosur countries in South America.

Fianna Fáil Councillor William O’Leary called on the council to make contact due to the “devastating impact” the deal will have on Irish and Cork farmers.

The trade deal, which has been in negotiation for the past 20 years, between the EU and Mercosur countries in South America (Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay) will see 99,000 tonnes of beef on EU supermarket shelves in eight year’s time.

Councillor O’Leary said it will be the final nail in the coffin for the beef and suckler sectors.

“They have sold us out, the EU, they have sold out Irish farmers. It is an act of treason against the Irish farmers,” Mr O’Leary said.

The Councillor called on the Irish Government to protect farmers.

“Do the best they can to at least postpone it until after Brexit which is going to be vital,” he said.

Mr O’Leary gathered support from the council chamber, with councillor Bernard Moynihan saying the meat would not be quality assured and would have no traceability.

Councillor Deirdre O’Brien also agreed that this was not a good deal for rural Ireland.