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Buyers Criticised For Bull Beef 'Crisis'

27 January 2014

IRELAND - Beef factories have been accused of leaving farmers 'high and dry' after increasing penalties on the age of bull beef.

The Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association beef chairman Edmond Phelan said producers have been misled by buyers two years after some plants encouraged farmers to go into Friesian bull beef.

January has seen higher penalties fixed to bull beef over 16 months of age due to limited market opportunities for older bull beef. 

This has put farming 'on a knife edge' with farmers with pens of unsaleable bulls, said Mr Phelan.

He voiced concern over the stress felt on some farms, adding: “Judging by the calls I have received in the past week, I fear for the mental health of some farmers caught up in this situation.”

Mr Phelan posited that plants were eliminating bulls to undermine live trade to North Africa, mainly a bull market.

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