Farm Ireland

Tuesday 20 February 2018

Dept scrub drive follows EU audit

Declan O'Brien

Declan O'Brien

A major drive by the Department of Agriculture to have ineligible areas of scrub marked on Single Farm Payment (SFP) applications is causing serious delays in the completion of maps.

One farm consultant said the Department has insisted that all areas of scrub are marked on maps. A letter detailing the new requirement was sent out to farm advisers.

Even small ineligible areas, down to 0.1ha, must be marked on the SFP maps this year, planners confirmed.

It is understood the new guidelines follow complaints from EU auditors who carried out inspections on Irish SFP applications last year.

The Department has confirmed that it is issuing a full set of maps to all those who participated in last year's SFP scheme.

"It is particularly important that everyone examines the maps provided and, where any ineligible areas -- roadways, rivers, scrub, etc -- are found, mark them clearly on the maps," a Department statement read.

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