Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Monday, 14 June 2021

Seanad Committee on the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union

Impact of Brexit on the Food and Drink Industry: Discussion

Photo of Malcolm ByrneMalcolm Byrne (Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I thank the contributors. In terms of our recommendation, I agree with Mr. Lavelle regarding the rules of origin and the need for substantial reform of those rules. He may wish to comment on this. The issue has come up at the committee, particularly in the context of flour, as colleagues will know. Are there specific comments Mr. Lavelle or the other witnesses wish to make on that issue? It is important in the context of our recommendations with regard to negotiation and future trade talks on the part of the Government.

I have raised several points at the committee regarding the data adequacy decision and situations where data is being traded across the Border. Obviously, if a significant amount of product, whether that is milk, whiskey or raw materials, is going across the Border, then a lot of data is being stored on either side of the Border. Given the concerns that are being expressed, I ask our guests to address the potential impact that would be caused if it were to be determined at EU level that the data regime of the UK was not satisfactory.

Finally, and in relation to Senator Ó Donnghaile's point prior to mine, on the question of island of Ireland labelling, the drinks industry and the food industry more generally, where do the witnesses see the future marketing of food and drink from the island of Ireland going? Obviously, we have seen Tourism Ireland market the island very successfully on a tourism basis. I ask for the witnesses' view of how we are going to market food and drink from the island in the post-Brexit scenario.


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