Providing effective representation for Tillage Farmers in Ireland086

Irish Grain Growers’ Group to meet agriculture minister over aid

Representatives of the Irish Grain Growers’ Group (IGGG) will meet Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, in Dublin on Wednesday, October 25.

Securing an improved aid package for tillage farmers who suffered severe losses in the wake of the 2023 harvest will be the number one item on the agenda.

IGGG chair, Bobby Miler, commented: “The current aid package on offer of €8 million is totally insufficient to meet the needs of growers, who have been facing up to one of the most challenging years in living memory.

“The maximum payment currently on offer from the government is €2,800. This comes nowhere near meeting the losses incurred by growers.

“What’s more, this is a maximum amount only. Under the guidelines set out for the support measure, many growers may not even secure the €2,800.

“As IGGG has already pointed out, there is scope for the government to supplement the €7 million already drawn down from Brussels by a factor of 200% using national funds.”

The IGGG said that this would bring the pot of money available for tillage sector up to €21 million.

Aid package for grain growers

“We also want a bespoke aid package made available to those farmers who suffered complete crop losses in 2023,” Miller added.

IGGG’s call for additional national support funding comes in the wake of numerous examples from across the Europe Union, where this is now taking place.

A case in point is the recent confirmation that bespoke national support funding is being made available to pig farmers in Finland.

Miller also confirmed that the mood of Irish tillage farmers remains at a very low ebb.

“The persistent rain and poor ground conditions continue to pose major challenges for growers,” he said.

“Growers need a week of good weather to get on with winter planting. All we have had of late is one or two dry days with subsequent heavy rain making field work, more or less, impossible.

“The window to get winter barley crops into the ground has, more-or-less, closed. There is still scope to get winter wheat crops into the ground. But, again, this will be totally dependent on the weather.”

Richard Halleron (Agriland)

October 23, 2023 6:00 pm