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Smith announces Special Scheme to help People in Need this Christmas

The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD, is to open up intervention stocks to help people in need this Christmas.  Following discussion with a number of charitable organisations, the Minister announced today that he will make a substantial quantity of cheese available free of charge for distribution to those most in need.

The  cheese will be available from the 15th November 2010 in time for Christmas.

Minister Smith considers the scheme, which is funded by the European Commission to be an important means of contributing towards the well-being of the most deprived citizens in the Community.

"I am very conscious that many people find themselves in difficult circumstances at present and I want to commend the work of the many charitable organisations who are working on the frontline to bring what comfort and relief they can.  I am glad to be able to help their work in such a practical way," the Minister said.

The cheese is available in 12 x 1kg boxes from stores in Clondalkin, Portlaoise, Kilmacthomas Waterford, Cobh and Togher Co. Cork  after the 15th November 2010 with a  minimum of 1 box per collection.  Permits are now being issued to applicants to facilitate collection.

Any further information on the scheme and application forms are available from Anne Dobbs, Intervention Operations, Johnstown Castle, Wexford Tel 053-9165563

Date Released: 05 November 2010