Thousands face SFP wait until New Year
Processing of land parcel maps is continuing to cause delays
Thousands of farmers will have to wait until the New Year for the remainder of their single farm payment (SFP) because of continuing delays in the digitisation of land parcel maps.
The Department of Agriculture has admitted that the processing of land parcel identification system (LPIS) maps will not be completed until early next year.
While a Department statement insisted that the mapping difficulties need not delay the delivery of advance payments to farmers, all maps will have to be cleared before balancing payments can be issued.
Farm organisations now fear that the delivery of remaining SFP payments to thousands of farmers will be hit. Payment of the second 50pc of the SFP, which is worth €635m, is due to commence on December 1. However, the release of these funds will be restricted to those applicants whose maps have been fully cleared.
In the case of 50pc SFP advance, only farmers who had maps cleared for more than half of their eligible land received the full payment.
More than 25,000 farmers have not been paid their full Disadvantaged Area Scheme (DAS) payment, which suggests that there are mapping delays with these applications.
Payment of the second 50pc instalment of the SFP cannot be made to these farmers until their maps have been processed and cleared.
According to Department figures, the number of herds with maps for redigitising is 32,495. On average, two maps were submitted with each application.