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Warning over penalties on BDGP payments

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Colm Mahady / Fennells

Farmers in the Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP) face large fines if they are not compliant with the scheme's targets by October. The Irish Cattle Breeding Federation (ICBF) is to write to farmers currently failing to meet the scheme's requirements to inform them of where they stand and what the penalty for non-compliance will be.

Teagasc beef specialist Martina Harrington recently warned that with the programme in the sixth and final year of its first phase, farmers now must fulfil the scheme's replacement strategy, which is viewed as the most difficult target.

"The big one is the 50pc requirement for four-and five-star cows/heifers on October 31, which incurs a 140pc penalty," she said.

"So, not only will you not receive any payment for this year, you will also be deducted a further 40pc of the gross payment from another scheme."

Compliance status

Non-compliant farmers could still meet the requirements in this area by genotyping females born before June 30, 2019 or by buying in genotyped four- or five-star cows/heifers.

Harrington said farmers can check their compliance status by logging into their account on the ICBF website.

She said the information is also relevant to farmers currently meeting their BDGP targets.

These farmers need to monitor their overall herd rating to ensure they remain in the compliance bracket by not selling eligible animals.

Almost €40m in payments was issued to over 22,000 farmers under BDGP in 2019.

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