Farm Ireland

Sunday 17 December 2017

Farmers body spent €300k on 60th anniversary celebrations

Where the money goes
Where the money goes

Gordon Deegan

A splurge of around €300,000 on the Irish Farmers' Association's 60th anniversary celebrations contributed to its spend increasing by €750,000 last year to €12.25m.

The IFA's draft 2015 accounts confirm the one-off 60th anniversary celebration cost.

Coupled with this was another one-off cost, where the IFA spent an additional €150,000 on feeding volunteers, running buses and other logistics during the IFA's beef protests.

The IFA is the only farming organisation that maintains a full-time office in Brussels, and last year it cost the group €680,000, with a cost increase in the 12 months due to an overlap of senior management.

The figures show that the IFA's staff costs in the year to the end of March this year totalled €6m - an increase of 7pc on the €5.6m 2014 payout.

However, the accounts show that dividends and profits from IFA's non-core activities helped it to an overall income of €13.73m last year.

The IFA last year added to its coffers with a profit of €488,202 from its subsidiary IFA Telecom, and generated an additional €300,000 in dividends.

The accounts show that the association received €140,000 of its dividend from its investment in insurer FBD, and an additional €160,000 dividend from Davy that manages €7m of the IFA investment fund.

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However, the IFA wrote-off €4.2m from the book value of its shareholding in FBD during the year as a result of FBD's share price declining.

The value of the IFA's investment in IFA Telecom increased by almost a third last year to €4.3m. The IFA's cash pile increased from €1.7m to €2.4m.

Almost half the IFA's income came from membership fees accounting for €6m of income, according to the accounts published in the 'Irish Farmer's Journal'. The IFA also received income of €4.69m in European Investment Fund (EIF) last year.

Irish Independent