More forest owners receive 2018 payments

Andrew Doyle, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has announced that 4,248 forest owners have received their annual forest premium payments in their bank accounts this week, amounting to a sum of €15.4 million in total.

These payments are to those forest owners who applied for payment using the paper based application system. Over 6,000 forest owners, who had applied for their premiums online, have already received their payments since January 2019.

The Department is paying out almost €70m in forest premiums to Irish landowners this year with over 88% going directly to farmers with an average payment of €3,500 per farmer.

"These are a welcome addition to farm incomes helping to diversify those incomes and I would encourage all farmers to consider forestry if they wish to avail of this. This is a guaranteed premium for 15 years with all establishment costs covered and complement the existing livestock enterprise on any farm," Mininster Doyle said.

The Minister also advised current forest owners that they may still apply online for their forestry premiums through the IFORIS Internet portal on the Department’s Online Services website (www.agfood.ie).

In line with the Department’s policy to move schemes and services online, DAFM is looking at moving to a fully on-line system for next year.

The Minister commented “More and more landowners are moving to apply for their premiums online each year. This is because they see benefits principally that they receive their payment much earlier in the year. We will be making further announcements on plans for next year in the coming months after reviewing the current system”.

The Minister also announced introduction of a reconstitution scheme for forest-owners whose plantations were affected by the severe drought of 2018.

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The Minister commented, “I am very aware of the financial hardship experienced by landowners whose trees failed due to the extreme drought of Summer 2018.

" In addition to the measures which I previously announced for these landowners, I am now announcing this reconstitution scheme which offers a tiered payment system for private forest owners who replace those dead trees“

Online Editors