The Irish Government has announced plans to boost production of the country’s corn crop oil, with the first of 10 million tonnes being delivered in 2018.
The announcement, made on Thursday by Agriculture Minister Jim Healy, follows a number of initiatives by the Irish Government to increase the production of foodstuffs including ethanol and biofuels.
Mr Healy said: “I am delighted to announce a new corn production program.
It will bring in up to 50 million tonnes of corn oil over the next five years.”
The Corn and Bean Council, which represents the interests of the industry, is delighted to see that the Government has taken this step and that this investment will ensure the country can continue to feed the growing demand for food.
“The Government said the production programme will help meet growing demand and provide the Government with a competitive edge in the international corn markets.”
We will invest €10m in the production program in 2019 and 2020, increasing the current production capacity to over 1 million tonnes,” Mr Healy added.
Healy said the program will see an investment of €1.1bn in the corn market and the Irish market.”
This is a key priority for us, because it’s one of the key sectors that we see as the best way of meeting our growth targets,” he said.”
For our exports, the country needs to be able to continue to be competitive and to be a leader in the global corn markets.
“The announcement comes as a new crop oil production deal between the European Union and Ireland is being hammered out.
Under the deal, the EU will provide €1bn to the Irish government to produce corn oil.
The agreement also provides for an additional €2bn to be earmarked for export development.
In a statement, the European Commission said the agreement will enable the EU to meet the need for a high-quality product for the European market.
It said the European Investment Bank would help the Irish economy develop, adding: “The European Commission hopes that the investment will help Ireland meet its commitments to the European Food Security Framework.”