Fodder Scheme exclusion of milk suppliers is ‘scandalous’

President of the ICMSA Pat McCormack has taken issue with the minister on another issue of exclusion from the Fodder Support Scheme, that of the country’s milk suppliers.

Leaving these farmers out is “scandalous” and illustrates once again “the bias that has developed within the current government and policymakers against family farms”.

This approach is only going to result in “the demise of family farming, to be replaced by industrial-scale units in ten years’ time unless our rural TDs stand up for family farms and insist that the government supports them,” he warned.

It is wrong to keep dairy farmers out of the Fodder Scheme because they have suffered very extensively from the succession of rises in input costs (as have all farmers).  Figures from the Central Statistics Office last week demonstrated this but it is the cause of great resentment that family dairy farms are excluded “while he has taken a decision to support people with substantial off-farm incomes,” the ICMSA chief said.

Read the full story in tomorrow’s Kerry’s Eye

New Agri-Environment Scheme will be ‘bureaucratic nightmare’

IFA President Tim Cullinan said the new agri-environment scheme announced by the Government today was likely to be a bureaucratic nightmare.

“While we don’t have full visibility on the exact conditions of the scheme, it looks very complicated and is likely to be tied up in red tape,” he said.

“This is typical of how the Minister and his Department are operating now. Big announcements with headline figures before the detail is properly discussed with farmers,” he said.

“We have had various environment schemes over the years from REPS to AEOS to GLAS. Each version has put more costs on farmers without any income increase. This new scheme is extremely complicated. It will exclude many farmers and huge amounts of funding will leak to people running the Co-operation model, and to other consultants,” he said.

Read the full story in tomorrow’s Kerry’s Eye