Farmers facing fodder crisis 'double whammy'
Costs surge and milk collections slump as dairy bosses warn that further milk price cuts are likely
Farmers are facing a 'double whammy' from weather woes as costs surge due to fodder bills while milk collections slump.
Demand has been reported as strong amongst dairy and drystock farmers for the thousands of tonnes of hay, haylage, maize and alfalfa that has been imported in the last week.
Farm leaders have called for a hardship fund and meal voucher scheme following a meeting in the north-west where some farmers have been buying in fodder for several months.
"There were a lot of hardship cases and they don't have the funds to buy more fodder," said the IFA's Padraic Joyce following the meeting in Roscommon.
"There are some farmers selling stock while others in the Knowledge Transfer scheme can't sell any more stock.
"Those farmers along the west coast and the north-west have been buying fodder now for six months and it is at a critical point," added Mr Joyce.
"There are farmers selling their animals to feed what remains on the farm."
And dairy bosses have warned that further milk price cuts are inevitable due to weakening global demand.