Government Committed to COOL for Poultry

IRELAND - Tony Killeen T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (with special responsibility for Fisheries and Forestry), said that the Government remained committed to the principle of country of origin labelling for poultry, as well as for pigmeat and sheepmeat.
calendar icon 4 September 2008
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The Clare T.D. was speaking following the appointment of a liquidator to Cappoquin Chickens and the potential consequences for the employees and poultry growers supplying chickens to the plant.

Minister of State Killeen said he hoped that the opportunity afforded by the High Court could be used to secure the Waterford company’s future.

Cappoquin Chickens has been operating for nearly 50 years, run by generations of the O'Connor family from Cappoquin.

Along with employees from west Waterford and east Cork, the company has cold storage depots in Dublin, Galway and Limerick.

According to Minister of State Killeen, ‘The Department of Agriculture and Food acknowledges the difficulties being experienced by the indigenous Irish poultry industry. The Department, in conjunction with the Department of Health and Children, has drafted national regulations requiring such country of origin labelling and has notified them to the European Commission in December 2007.’

He added that he was particularly anxious that country of origin labelling be introduced to ensure that consumers were not misled as to the origin of the product and to address shortcomings in existing legislation to prevent misleading origin indications.

Minister Killeen noted that the annual farmgate value of the Irish poultry industry is approximately EUR150 million and that the predominant outlet for Irish chicken is the Irish retail market.

‘I would urge retailers, food outlets and consumers in County Clare and across the country to support the Irish industry and Irish products and particularly to purchase poultry produced under the Bord Bia Quality Assurance Scheme’, he concluded.

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