Creed unveils new National Reserve fund
€5m scheme will prioritise young farmers and new entrants
A National Reserve Scheme for 2017 with a fund of €5m will be launched today by the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed.
The scheme is being funded by a linear cut to the value of all Basic Payment Scheme entitlements.
However, the Department of Agriculture said that the €5m reserve scheme budget is equivalent to the amount of unspent funds under the Young Farmers Scheme in 2015 which were added to the Basic Payment Scheme financial ceiling.
Priority for the reserve will be given to 'Young Farmers' and 'New Entrants to Farming'.
Successful applicants receive an allocation of entitlements at the national average value of entitlements for the Basic Payment Scheme, or a top-up to that level where the applicant is below the average. The national average under the Basic Payment Scheme is approximately €185/ha.
Given that the National Reserve is capped at €5m, the scheme should fund full and top-up payments on over 30,000ha. It is anticipated that over 500 farmers will apply for the scheme.
Minister Creed said the 2017 Young Farmers Scheme will also be available to provide an additional payment to any person who qualifies as a 'young farmer'.