Price of food likely to rise in coming years, says Glanbia MD
The era of cheap food is over, Glanbia plc’s managing director John Moloney said yesterday.
The head of the dairy and nutritional products business pointed to the rising global population and expanding middle class. “And by definition, the era of low-priced food is over, in my view,” he said. Food prices would be volatile but would be higher on average, “and that’s the opportunity for Ireland”.
He was speaking at the annual conference of the Agricultural Science Association in Druids Glen, Co Wicklow. Earlier, Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney raised concerns about the price being paid by retailers to farmers for produce. The price was reducing and it was a problem across Europe.
“I think we have to try to get a collective response from Europe to stop that trend. But I think we need to be careful in Ireland . . . if we push that argument too far, it means the kind of companies that can buy food from outside Ireland . . . will simply source elsewhere.”
IFA president John Bryan said processors and retailers would have to get used to paying higher prices. “This does not necessarily mean increases in consumer prices, as there has to be a better and fairer distribution of the final price back down the price chain,” he said.
In a wide-ranging public interview with journalist Richard Curran, Glanbia’s John Moloney predicted the company would significantly increase its sports nutrition business in the next five years.