Drought conditions in Northern Ireland look set to seriously affect the region's animal feed manufacturers, according to Conservative MP Dr Therese Coffey.
Dr Coffey was reported in the Belfast Telegraph as warning that a lack of rainfall in recent months has made "water the new oil", with growers unable to produce their usual harvests. This means that the traditional components of animal feed, such as wheat, hay and straw are likely to be in short supply this summer.
According to Dr Coffey many rivers are running dry and it will have a knock-on effect all the way up the food chain.
"This is going to have an impact in terms of the feed for our livestock, the lack of forage, the lack of hay, will have repercussions next winter for which we will all start to pay a heavy price," she told the newspaper.
Dr Coffey's comments come as it is reported that the UK barley harvest is set to be the worst for over 40 years, due to a lack of rainfall.
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