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Muddy hell Motorists warned to avoid Dublin city ahead of major farming protest over CAP

"Every policy of this Government, including their proposed National Strategic Plan to implement the Common Agricultural Policy, is designed to reduce production. Farmers are being asked to do more and more for less.

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IFA 'Save Irish Farming' protest planned for Dublin this lunchtime. File photo

IFA 'Save Irish Farming' protest planned for Dublin this lunchtime. File photo

IFA 'Save Irish Farming' protest planned for Dublin this lunchtime. File photo

Motorists are being urged to avoid Dublin city centre today ahead of a major farmers' demonstration.

Farmers from around the country will stage a protest at lunchtime to highlight concerns over demands being placed on the farming sector.

The move is part of the ‘Save Irish Farming’ campaign, and is replacing the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) planned 'Farm Family Rally', which was modified due to the increase in Covid figures.

A convoy of tractors and farm vehicles, led by the IFA President Tim Cullinane will arrive in the city at lunchtime.

Speaking ahead of the event Mr Cullinane said: "Every policy of this Government, including their proposed National Strategic Plan to implement the Common Agricultural Policy, is designed to reduce production. Farmers are being asked to do more and more for less.

“We have consistently called for genuine engagement and negotiation with farm organisations to develop a farm-level plan that farmers can work towards achieving.

"To date, nothing has been forthcoming. All farmers have received is empty rhetoric and lofty targets with nothing to back them up. Uncertainty is detrimental for any business; farming is no different. Farmers are reaching the end of their tether,” he continued.

Mr Cullinan has argued that farmers are “very conscious” of the climate challenge and want to “play their part”.

“The Government needs to provide more funding, including a properly funded Common Agricultural Policy, to ensure that farmers can take on the climate challenge while remaining viable,” he added.

The IFA said that the farming and food sector employs 300,000 people across the country, and contributed €3bn in exports in 2020.

However, it said that currently “only 30pc of farmers in Ireland are viable”.

"The reality is that if food is not produced in Ireland, it will be produced in countries with a higher carbon footprint such as Brazil, where it was reported this week that 13,235 square kilometres of rainforest were cleared in 2020/2021.

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"Farming is a business activity, and farmers will not stay at it unless they can make a profit and make a living for their families,” he added.

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