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Minister Coveney signals that Ireland has moved into an over quota position at end September

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, today announced that total volume of milk supplies up to the end of September 2013, taking into account the relevant butterfat adjustment, leave Ireland 0.42% over quota – the first time our supply has exceeded quota this year. This compares to a position at the same point last year when Ireland was 2.14% under quota.

While the figures are not unexpected, given the very favourable milk production conditions that prevailed throughout the summer and early autumn, the Minister is anxious to remind farmers that "while we avoided a superlevy last year, largely due to the challenging weather conditions, the country did finish the 2011/12 milk quota year at 1.05% over quota and this cost the farmers who were responsible for this over supply some €16 million in super levy payment.  The surge in milk production over the recent months is a reminder of the risk that the country could incur another milk super levy at the end of the current quota year and this could have very serious financial consequences for affected farmers".  

Minister Coveney has therefore stressed that against this background it remains critically important that individual milk producers continue to manage their enterprises having regard to the quota situation until the expiry of the milk quota regime on the 31st of March 2015. Milk producers should also note that the final 0.75% quota increase was applied on the 1st of April 2013 and that no further quota increases are planned for the final year of the quota regime. 

Minister Coveney said while he now accepted the policy of the Government and the sector was to expand in the period post 2015, the EU quota rules must be applied fully up to the expiry date.

Date Released: 18 October 2013