Just as the government had recognised the need to protect the country’s built and archaeological heritage it was surely as justified to retain and protect live evidence of a 5,000 year old species that grazed around the ancient monuments when they were built.
This suggestion was made by Independent MEP Marian Harkin when she spoke at the Inaugural two day conference of the Irish Rare Breeds Society which was organised by the Mulranny based Old Irish Goat Society and held in Westport on Thursday and Friday, June 15th/16th.
Rare breeds such as the old Irish goat were more likely to preserved in areas of natural constraint and should be supported through EU and national agricultural policies, she said.
“I fully support the efforts of the Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association in its efforts to ensure that the largest ANC payments in future will go to farmers with the most disadvantaged land and the possibility of enhanced payments for rare breeds preservation should be pursued in the context of CAP review”, Marian Harkin said.
The Independent MEP spoke of assisting the Irish Seed Savers organisation to successfully lobby the European Commission on the issue of seeds sovereignty and prevention of delivering seeds domination into the hands of large multinational producers. She emphasised the value of lobbying on issues of biodiversity and she urged the rare breeds societies to maintain good communications with the European Commission on their issues of concern. “I will, as in the past, be an open channel to Commission officials who, in my experience, maintain an open ear to those seeking to preserve biodiversity and rare breeds populations”, Marian Harkin MEP concluded.