Farmers blockade Department over inaction on beef

Simon Coveney: Accused of siding with meat processors and retailers instead of beef farmers.

Dozens of farmers are blockading the Department of Agriculture in Dublin this afternoon.

The IFA demonstration is in protest against what they claim is the inaction of Minister Simon Coveney at a time of falling beef prices.

The protesters have built a hay barricade outside the Department and said they will stay there until they get a response from the Minister.

They are accusing Simon Coveney of siding with factories and letting down livestock farmers still struggling in the aftermath of the horsemeat scandal.

"The retailers and the meat factories have colluded to make sure that our prices fell on a continuous basis, and they have damaged our incomes to the stage where there's no income left in this industry," said IFA President Eddie Downey.

"We need the minster to stand up, not like he did [before] where he sided completely with the factories. He needs to stand up, and stand now with farmers."

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