Yellow card system sought for farmers
Irish Family Farm Rights Group Managing Director Tommy Gunning has called for a yellow card system for farmers in schemes.
Speaking at a suckler farming income crisis meeting in Tullamore, Co Offaly on Friday, Mr Gunning said inspections were getting ridiculous. “We want to bring in a yellow card,” he told the group.
He said this would mean farmers would get a chance to put things in order before being penalised.
“In any walk of life you will get a time to put things right but yet they don’t do it in farming,” said Mr Gunning.
He also called for more transparency in relation to schemes so that farmers can know where the money is going. “As far as I can see by the time the Department is paid, Teagasc is paid, the poor farmer that is producing it all is getting sweet feck all out of it,” he remarked.
Mr Gunning made the comments while outlining a series of measures the Irish Family Farm Rights Group would like to see introduced. Among the measures was the removal of the recording of cattle movements.
He said the recording was brought in as a disease control measure but it is now influencing the price of cattle because people don’t want to bid on an animal that has moved three times. Mr Gunning explained that cattle moved more than four times cannot get quality assurance. The IFRG has a started a petition to have the movements removed.
He also took issue with calendar farming and said, in particular, slurry spreading is best managed by the farmer.