Saturday 19 April 2014

Dual payment boost for organic farmers

Organic farmers have welcomed the Department of Agriculture's decision to uphold dual payments on designated lands.

Earlier this year it was announced that the Department was to withdraw dual payment to organic farmers who were in the AEOS and the Organic Farming Scheme. However, this decision has now been overturned.

However, the general manager of the Irish Organic Farmers' and Growers' Association (IOFGA), Gillian Westbrook, expressed her disappointment that only farmers who appealed against the decision will now receive payments that they were entitled to.

"It is particularly unfortunate for those who have now left the scheme, especially as the current CAP negotiations are looking attractive for organic farmers," she said.

When farmers originally signed their organic contracts it was stated that they would be entitled to payments under both schemes, Ms Westbrook explained.

Because only farmers that appealed the decision were receiving payment, this had left 148 farmers at a loss of up to €5,000, she said.

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