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Food firms, farmers and banks for event

Thursday, January 09 16:39:45

Food processors, farmers and the banks will go head-to-head in a keynote national conference at the end of this month.

The AgriFood 2014 Conference on Friday 31st January in Dublin's Clyde Court Hotel will bring top food industry executives, banking strategists and farming interests together in a unique gathering of minds to explore sustainable investment options for growth and development.

The conference will be opened by Tom Moran, Secretary General, Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine; and the CEO of Enterprise Ireland, Julie Sinnamon will provide the closing address.

Bord Bia CEO Aidan Cotter, IDB CEO Kevin Lane, Glanbia Ingredients CEO Jim Bergin and Kepak CEO John Horgan will join Joe Hyland, CEO of Irish Country Meats and Truly Irish Chairman Jim McGrath to provide the Market and Processor Vision for the future. This session will be Chaired by Teagasc Chairman Dr. Noel Cawley.

Tom Clinton and Alan Jagoe will provide the Farmer's Perspective in a panel chaired by Agricultural Trust CEO Matt Dempsey. The debate will be fuelled by Dr. Pat Dillon of Teagasc; Professor Jim Burke of UCD and Keenan Executive Chairman, Gerard Keenan. Aisling Meehan of Agricultural Solicitors will address the issue of land mobility and suckler specialist Michael Doran will discuss farm conversion.

Following from these expert market, processor and farming perspectives, Economist Colm McCarthy will explore the economic context for new investment and financial solutions within Ireland's agrifood industry. Former IBRC Chairman Alan Dukes will then lead a discussion on the financial solutions available for Ireland's agrifood industry by top corporate executives and agri-strategists of leading financial institutions including AIB, Bank Of Ireland, Barclays, HSBC, Rabobank and Ulster Bank.

"The growth potential that is constantly being forecast in various commentaries can have an extremely beneficial effect on Ireland's economic growth, employment and the national balance of payments, coupled with rural development, but only if it's managed correctly," said Michael Cronin, Chairman of AgriFood Business Partners.