Irish food security post Brexit

Schuhart

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Almostly comically, the topic of Post Brexit UK food security has been given an airing. Here, we've the usual complacency
Sandwich ingredients safe: Taoiseach rules out 'food stockpiling' in the case of a hard Brexit

TAOISEACH LEO VARADKAR has ruled out the need for Ireland to stockpile food in the case of a hard Brexit.
Sure, Irish agriculture is terrifically productive, innit?

Well, no, actually. The food value of what we import exceeds the food value of what we export.
Ireland has been net importer of food since 2000, UN data reveals

Contrary to the prevailing opinion in Irish agriculture, both Ireland and the EU are net importers of food energy.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, data from 1960 to 2011 (the most recently available data) reveal that while Ireland was a net importer of calories until the mid-1970s, it then became a net exporter until 2000.

Since then, however, the value of this country’s food energy net imports in calories has at times exceeded the equivalent of the calorie intake of 2.5 million people.
Half of us would starve if we depended on current domestic food production.

Our food security depends on the UK, same as the security of the medicine supply chain that we've already admitted is a potential problem.
Indeed and, while UK as at least conscious of its strategic weakness in food production, we also have a potential supply issue that we're completely unaware of. We import about £3 billion worth of food and drink from the UK:

https://www.pwc.nl/nl/brexit/documents/pwc-brexit-monitor-the-impact-on-agrifood.pdf

We actually import more of the food that we actually eat than the UK - while picturing ourselves as not having a food security problem.
Domestic supply is wrongly structured, in any event
<...>

Goods Exports and Imports March 2017 - CSO - Central Statistics Office<...>

Our exports have no domestic market. If there was an interruption in access to international markets, there would be no-one that producers could sell their products to. The food would be useless to us.

Overproducing useless food woudn't constitute security.
Why the blind spot around food? No similar blind spot around medicines; no-one suggesting our large value pharma sector will carry us through.
 


gleeful

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We export food to the UK. We import food from the UK. In many cases its the same food.

For example Ireland makes a vast amount of cheddar but we dont have large packing facilities. So we export huge 25kg block of it to a factory near liverpool where its cut into small 200g blocks, packed and labelled. Then it comes back. The value has gone up due to it now being shelf-ready. So on the books it looks like Ireland exporting low value food and importing higher value food. But its the same cheese.

If, post Brexit, we need to pack it in Ireland, we will. We wont starve.
 

benroe

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We have a fishing fleet that could easily feed most of the people most of the time. I wonder would the EU suspend our quotas in the event of a food shortage or would they let us starve rather than break their rules.
 

McTell

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No
On balance we are ok.

Some new processing plant needed, plenty of food if we ate less chips and more greens.

If you have to buy tesco products, they're much cheaper in newry.
 

gleeful

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On balance we are ok.

Some new processing plant needed, plenty of food if we ate less chips and more greens.

If you have to buy tesco products, they're much cheaper in newry.
Even though they were shipped to Newry via Dublin!
 

Paddy{ie

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We export food to the UK. We import food from the UK. In many cases its the same food.

For example Ireland makes a vast amount of cheddar but we dont have large packing facilities. So we export huge 25kg block of it to a factory near liverpool where its cut into small 200g blocks, packed and labelled. Then it comes back. The value has gone up due to it now being shelf-ready. So on the books it looks like Ireland exporting low value food and importing higher value food. But its the same cheese.

If, post Brexit, we need to pack it in Ireland, we will. We wont starve.
Plenty of cheese in the EU. In 2010 we had the ‘let them eat cheese’ effort. https://www.rte.ie/news/2010/1105/137752-cheese/
 

farnaby

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Imminent solution to the obesity crisis?
 

Spanner Island

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The world is not going to end on March 30th... either here or in the UK...

The world will keep on turning and if there's a no deal outcome... the critical stuff will be sorted quick enough with a more comprehensive trade deal being done over the next decade or so... because it will have to be regardless of what either side thinks...

Unless things are allowed to get really really stupid and politicians put their own egos and arrogance and stupidity ahead of everything else and allow those things to dictate things... which of course can never be ruled out...

How long voters would tolerate this in the midst of a more chaotic no deal environment is debatable...
 

PBP voter

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Hard Brexit will see tariffs of 3% on food.

Currency fluctuation is a bigger factor.
 

gleeful

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We're grand, the UK's food security is foooked
I think we will have a lot of odd shortages as the supply chain (which does run via the UK) breaks down but I think they will be mainly inconveniences rather than anything critical.

I also think that a 'no deal' will be temporary. In my company we are planning for 4-6 weeks of serious problems. After that it will settle down.
 

PBP voter

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I think we will have a lot of odd shortages as the supply chain (which does run via the UK) breaks down but I think they will be mainly inconveniences rather than anything critical.

I also think that a 'no deal' will be temporary. In my company we are planning for 4-6 weeks of serious problems. After that it will settle down.
Best news of all is the Irish building industry costs will go up by about 35% because of tariffs on materials.
 

firefly123

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we are the most food secure nation in the world.

https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2017-food-security/

Ireland is the world’s most “food-secure” nation, improving its food affordability, availability, quality and safety while the U.S. has stagnated, according to a copy of the sixth annual Global Food Security Index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit scheduled for release Tuesday.
Ireland has outspent the U.S. in relative terms on public research and development on agriculture over the past five years, increasing farming’s share of gross domestic product even as its economy has grown, according to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development.
 


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