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The European Parliament
The European Parliament


The Irish Co-operative Organisational Society is one of the few representative industry organisations to have a full-time office in Brussels spanning the history of Ireland’s membership of the European Union.

The goal of the office is to ensure that we develop functioning strategic objectives that:

  • Reflect the will of or co-operative members
  • Protect & promotes our member owned businesses
  • Ensure the Irish co-operative movement continues its tradition of excellence and improvement in the international arena as handed down by our founder Sir Horace Plunkett

The ICOS Brussels office has always punched far above its weight in Europe by developing clever alliances, keeping a wide network of national and international contacts and by focusing solely on policy areas of direct importance to our membership in the co-operative movement.

The services and role that the ICOS Brussels office provides for co-operative members can be grouped as follows:

  • Lobbying and driving policy that promotes the aims of the Irish co-operative movement
  • Representing ICOS members on European and international farming and co-operative organisations such as COPA COGECA
  • Working with Irish government officials to ensure that co-operative objectives are reflected in international government policy
  • Developing links with a national representative and non-governmental groups to further our goals and objectives

We keep comprehensive dossiers in other policy areas of importance for our members such as:

  • EU budget
  • Innovation and research funding
  • Consumer legislation (inc labelling)
  • Co-operative development and governance
  • Climate change
  • Energy policy and carbon exchange
  • Trade (WTO, MERCOSUR)
  • International business mergers and acquisitions
  • Food security and pricing
  • Grain and animal feed
  • Vet and animal health issues
  • Food safety
  • Transport (of animals)
  • Environmental legislation
  • Promotion of food funding
  • Fisheries

The ICOS Brussels office remains at the disposal of its members at all times and is  a key element of the service that ICOS provides, especially in an era where co-operative interests are increasingly being shaped by international legislation and global trade.