Clune seeks answers from the Commission on West Cork/Kerry Shellfish Industry

12 February 2015
By Elaine Murphy
elaine@TheCork.ie

Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune has submitted a parliamentary question
to the European Commission on the possibility of European aid for
shellfish famers in West Cork and Kerry.

“As we know, high temperatures last summer resulted in a late and
extensive autumn bloom of the most common naturally occurring marine
biotoxin, dynophysis – commonly known as Red Tide. This has created a
crisis for the Irish Shell fish industry, in particular for the rope
grown mussel industry, in the South of the Country around West Cork
and in parts of Kerry. Speaking from the European Parliament in
Strasbourg this afternoon MEP Clune described the situation as
serious,

“Many Shellfish farmers have been forced to cease operations for close
on 5 months now. Shellfish farmers have seen their crop destroyed. The
Shellfish industry are very measured on this and have not sought to
dispute why the closures of some bays is necessary on public health
grounds. What they are looking for is to explore what assistance is
available from European funds like the European Fisheries Fund and the
European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

“The Shellfish industry in my own Ireland South constituency is
supporting the economic viability of many remote, rural and coastal
communities in West Cork and Kerry and I have asked the Commission to
outline what can be done to assist these small scale producers in West
Cork and Kerry.

“I have been liaising with the Minister for Agricultures office on the
matter and I will speak with Minister Coveney on his return from the
States, where he is currently on a trade mission to promote Irish
Beef.

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