Belfast Telegraph

O’Neill discusses supply chain concerns with Groceries Code Adjudicator

Stormont Executive press release - Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Agriculture Minister, Michelle O’Neill, today met with Christine Tacon, the Groceries Code Adjudicator, to relay local industry concerns about how the food supply chain operates.

Speaking afterwards the Minister said: “Today’s meeting was very informative and I was particularly encouraged by the firm but fair approach which Ms Tacon proposes to adopt as she carries out her investigation and enforcement functions. Her clear aim is to make a permanent and enduring difference to the groceries sector and to increase trust between retailers and their direct suppliers. I would encourage people to engage with the Adjudicator who has assured me of her commitment to protecting the anonymity of anyone with concerns.

“My position on this matter has consistently been that we need an Adjudicator with real power. I therefore welcomed this opportunity to relay to her, on behalf of our industry, their concerns about how the food chain operates. In particular, I emphasised the fact that our farmers and processors feel that they are not getting a fair share of the supply chain rewards.”

She added: “Whilst I appreciate that Ms Tacon’s role is not to determine a fair price, I am hopeful that her influence on preventing unfair practices should help safeguard the interests of producers and others in the supply chain. I believe that farmers should get a fair price for their produce and that everyone in the food supply chain should share in the risks, costs and rewards.”

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