The Fishing Daily Podcast Series 2 Episode 07 – Oliver McBride speaks to Brendan Byrne, CEO of the Irish Fish Processors and Exporters Association Organisation (IFPEA) about his recent trip to meet EU officials in a series of meetings in Brussels, the weighing debacle in Killybegs (the interim control plan), the SFPA’s actions against two fish processing factories in Killybegs and the Common Fisheries Policy Review (Report), amongst other issues affecting the Irish fishing and processing industry.
Brendan Byrne of the IFPEA - a Department no longer fit for purpose
A year into his role as CEO of the IFPEA, Brendan Byrne talks about the difficulties the industry is facing when it comes to dealing with the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA).
The actions of the SFPA have led officials in the European Institutions to start inquiring about what is happening in Ireland.
Last week, Brendan and the CEO of the Irish Fish Producers Organisation, Aodh O’Donnell were invited into heart of the EU in Brussels to meet with officials from various departments and from various levels right across the board to discuss major issues the fishing and processing industry is being forced to deal with.
“Well, the purpose of the meetings was to highlight the current situation in the Irish fishing industry, where we see more and more harassment and intimidation by the control authority of the fishing sector. Where we see the Department (of Agriculture, Food and the Marine) not fit for purpose and slow in reacting to crises that are facing the fishing industry, such as the fuel crisis, such as they fall out of the TCA Brexit. We’re one of the few coastal countries that still hasn’t put in place the Brexit Adjustment Reserve Fund. We also discover now that the EMFAF fund hasn’t even gone through the environmental assessment stage.
“So, the picture that we painted to Europe is that we have a department that is completely, no longer fit for purpose that needs reform.
“We’ve control authority that’s out of control, and we have a political system that’s at sixes and sevens’ and is not addressing the crisis that has faced both the catching and processing sector.
“That’s the reality I’m speaking to the people that are listening to this program. They see it on a daily basis.”
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Podcast music used with permission of In Their Thousands – Acrasia © In Their Thousands 2018. Check out Spotify