Farm Ireland

Wednesday 21 February 2018

Over 95,000 farmers to receive ANC payments next week

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)
FarmIreland Team

FarmIreland Team

Department of Agriculture has confirmed that payment under the ANC Scheme to 95,000 farmers will commence early next week, IFA Deputy President Richard Kennedy has said.

He said, “This payment is worth more than €200m to farmers. It is vital at this time, particularly given the very difficult weather conditions over the past month.”

Richard Kennedy said paying out next week is in line with the Charter of Farmers Rights and IFA expects the maximum to be paid out at this stage.

The IFA Deputy President said this payment must be followed by a 70% advance of the Basic Payment Scheme on October 16 to 130,000 farmers, and payments under GLAS and other schemes in November/December.

Direct payments worth €1.7bn are due to farmers between now and the end of the year.

IFA will be demanding that all schemes are paid on time, and there is no repeat of the GLAS problems of earlier this year.

Hill farmers and stock owners with marginal land potentially stand to lose more than €50m in direct payments as a result of a new round of land eligibility inspections by the Department of Agriculture, it has been claimed.

The Farming Independent has learned that the inspections started in recent weeks with far tighter criteria being employed by officials regarding ground that qualifies for payments.

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The Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA) has claimed that stricter eligibility rules could remove up to one-third of hill and marginal ground, or around 250,000 hectares.

Vincent Roddy (pictured) of the INHFA said this would cost affected farmers €150/ha under the Basic Payment Scheme, and a further €96/ha in ANC payments. The full €246/ha loss across 250,000 hectares, even allowing for deductions, would exceed €50m.

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