Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Friday 20 July 2018

'Farmers in worst affected areas unable to access fodder scheme'

INHFA plan protest over scheme

Fodder donated from Durrow, Co Laois to farmers in Co Clare struggling with fodder shortages.
Fodder donated from Durrow, Co Laois to farmers in Co Clare struggling with fodder shortages.
FarmIreland Team

FarmIreland Team

ICSA has claimed that farmers in several of the worst affected areas including Mayo, Galway, Roscommon, Longford, Cavan and Monaghan, Westmeath and West Limerick have so far been unable to access the scheme.

ICSA has scheduled a meeting with Teagasc officials for today, Friday (9 Feb) to seek further clarification on the scope of the Fodder Transport Scheme.

Commenting, ICSA Cavan chairman Hugh Farrell said, “ICSA understands from our discussions with the Department that where fodder is not available within 100km of a farm, then the farmer should be entitled to get the subsidy assuming he has done a fodder budgeting exercise with Teagasc.

"However, the issue of eligibility for the scheme has been coming up over and over again for our members.”

Fodder arrives in Dowra from Tipperary. Gerry McMorrow loads fodder from Tipperary onto a farmers trailer after it arrived in McMorrow Timber Yard, Dowra, Co Leitrim. Photo Brian Farrell
Fodder arrives in Dowra from Tipperary. Gerry McMorrow loads fodder from Tipperary onto a farmers trailer after it arrived in McMorrow Timber Yard, Dowra, Co Leitrim. Photo Brian Farrell

“The scheme had initially been warmly welcomed, however, it would appear that getting to the bottom of whether you’re eligible or not for the subsidy has been proving problematic.

"Here in Cavan the need for fodder has been well and truly established by the farmers on the ground so it’s very frustrating that we and other counties have to wait so long to be considered eligible. ICSA will be looking to have the whole process streamlined if the scheme is to have any real benefit. ”

Meanwhile, ICSA Sligo chairman Gabriel Gilmartin said ICSA will also be seeking the inclusion of small square bales in the scheme.

"Currently the smallest bales covered are 6’ft x 3’ft x 2’ft which are not suitable for everybody. We see no reason for the exclusion of small square bales.”

Also Read


Protest

The Irish Natura and Hill Farmers association are holding a protest to highlight the need for a fodder aid scheme that will deliver for farmers that are experiencing fodder shortages. National President Colm O’Donnell outlined how the Minister had ignored the principal recommendation of the stakeholders committee which was for a meal voucher.

The INHFA decision which was taken by their National Council will involve a protest at the Department of Agriculture Offices in Drumshanbo, Co Leitrim next Monday 12 February starting at 10:30am.

Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed introduced the targeted Fodder Transport Support measure operated through the Co-operative structure in recent weeeks.

This measure applies only to fodder purchased in the period from January 29 2018 until April 20 2018.

Farmers, who have an identified fodder shortage, having completed a fodder budgeting exercise with their FAS agricultural advisor, will be eligible to receive a financial contribution towards offsetting the costs of transport of fodder in excess of 100 km.

The Minister said as fodder is traded between farms on a regular basis, it is essential that the support measure is targeted at those who most need it and does not impact on the normal functioning of the market for fodder and for this reason a minimum transport distance applies.

Eligible applicants will receive a transport contribution of €8 per standard bale of hay or straw for feeding, and €12 per standard bale of silage or haylage.


For Stories Like This and More
Download the FarmIreland App


Online Editors

Get the latest news from the FarmIreland team 3 times a week.





More in Schemes