Clare Marts’ En­nisty­mon site re­port­edly sold to Aldi su­per­mar­kets in ¤1.5m deal

Irish Independent - Farming - - News - Ken Whelan

CLARE MARTS are re­ported to have s ol d t heir f aci l i ty in En­nisty­mon to the Aldi su­per­mar­ket chain for a price re­ported to be in the re­gion of €1.5m.

The deal, which was un­der­stood to be un­der ne­go­ti­a­tion for some time now, was said to have been signed off at last week’s board meet­ing de­spite the best ef­forts of lo­cal farm­ers to keep the mart open.

Both Aldi and Clare Marts would make no com­ment on the mat­ter when con­tacted by the Farm­ing In­de­pen­dent.

It is be­lieved that Clare Marts in­tend to keep En­nisty­mon op­er­at­ing un­til the new buy­ers get plan­ning clear­ance for a ‘change of use’ for the site.

This may take up to two years, with pos­si­ble plan­ning ob­jec­tions from a va­ri­ety of su­per­mar­ket and shop­ping in­ter­ests in the north Clare area.

Clare ISMSA sec­re­tary Pat O’Donoghue told the Farm­ing In­de­pen­dent this week that the sale would ad­versely af­fect north Clare farm­ers who have sup­ported the mart since its foun­da­tion in the early 1960s.

Lo­cal farm­ers mounted a silent protest at the last Clare Mart board meet­ing called to con­sider the sale of the premises and have cam­paigned vig­or­ously to keep the mart open.

“At its height some 284 lo­cal farm­ers, mainly pro­duc­ing AI wean­lings, used the mart,” Pat O’Donoghue said.

“There is re­sent­ment about the way the mat­ter was han­dled. There was no pub­lic ten­der no­tice and no in­for­ma­tion process for lo­cal farm­ers,” he claimed.

Clare Marts op­er­ates a num­ber of sales out­lets in­clud­ing Kil­rush and Kil­fenora.

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