Six days given to pay debts
One of the country's major milk processors has employed a team of debt collectors to pursue farmers for outstanding debts.
As the cash crisis deepens on farms, debt collectors are giving farmers just six days to pay their bills in full.
Some of the top dairy farmers in the country, including those with herds of up to 600 cows, are in a cash crisis. Their wives have been forced to plead with financial institutions to allow them enough money to meet the weekly bill to provide food for their families.
James Kane, chairman of the IFA Farm Business Committee, said some dairy farmers were in a "desperate state" and more than 90pc of those in financial difficulty were never in trouble before but were now suffering because of the collapse in dairy incomes in 2009.
"Cheques are being bounced where the funds in the bank are €200 short and farmers are losing their credit rating for the simplest of things, which is terrifying for men who were never used to being in trouble," he said.
Mr Kane said some agricultural contractors were demanding payment up front because of payments still outstanding since last year.
He said the contractors were also under pressure to meet repayments on machinery and equipment.
Agri-merchants and milk processors were also pursuing payment of outstanding debts and farmers were being contacted by debt collectors for one of the major milk processors and given six days to pay up in full, he said.