Ireland imported about 98,407 tonnes of animal feed ingredients from Russia this year, despite EU-wide sanctions over the war in Ukraine allowing Russian-flagged ships to dock in EU ports.
Now the Agriculture Secretary has confirmed to RTE that two boats carrying animal feed have been granted special permission to land in Ireland in recent weeks.
The boat landing exemptions were granted by the Department for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, RTE reports.
The boats transported barley, soybean hulls and wheat, which are used for milk, pig and poultry rations.
EU sanctions will ban ships registered under the Russian flag from accessing EU ports from April 16, 2022, according to the Ministry of Enterprise.
Although it has been said that the Irish government has granted exemptions to allow two boatloads from Russia to dock in Irish ports carrying some imports, new figures obtained by Farming Independent show the country between January 1 and As of May 31, 71,907 tons of imported (sugar) beet pulp, 9,000 tons of sunflower meal feed, 8,000 tons of (sugar) beet molasses, 6,200 tons of soybean hulls and 3,300 tons of sunflower meal from the Russian Federation.
Overall, figures from the Department of Agriculture show that around 1.85 million tonnes of animal feed ingredients have been shipped to Irish ports from around 44 countries so far this year.
The largest feed imports came from the USA with a total of 385,458 t – mainly dried grain (120,620 t), corn gluten feed (91,112 t) and soybeans (86,000 t).
Argentina also supplied the Irish market with 291,669 tonnes of feed ingredients in the same period, consisting mostly of soybean feed supplies.
Canada, on the other hand, shipped 243,277 t of feed ingredients to Ireland up to the last month, which consisted mostly of corn stocks at 211,274 t.
In addition, around 166,369 tonnes of feed ingredients arrived from France – mainly maize (70,339 tonnes), barley (29,304 tonnes) and rapeseed meal (27,423 tonnes); about 123,086 tonnes of feed ingredients came from the UK, mainly wheat (59,680 tonnes) and barley (46,646 tonnes); and in the same period, a total of 116,500 tons of corn arrived from Ukraine.
Ireland is only 36 per cent self-efficient on animal concentrate feeds, which are recognized as an important dietary source of energy and protein in livestock, swine and poultry systems.
As such, the country generally imports an estimated 3.5 million tons of feed ingredients annually from around the world. The country’s enormous import dependency is further explained by the EU’s acute deficit in protein animal feed.
In a statement, a spokesman for the Ministry of Agriculture said: “The sourcing of feed and feed materials is a commercial consideration for the companies that trade in feed materials.
“Import companies strive to buy feed materials at the best price in relation to their availability and supply.
“The state does not purchase feed materials directly, but plays an important role in ensuring that imported feed meets the safety requirements of EU feed legislation.
“Both the Russian Federation and Ukraine have previously shipped animal feed to Ireland, particularly wheat, corn and sugar beet pulp; alternative sources of these products are now being used.”
https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/news/ireland-has-imported-98000t-of-animal-feed-ingredients-from-russia-this-year-41755407.html Ireland imported 98,000 tonnes of animal feed ingredients from Russia this year