Over four million euro has been allocated to a new fodder import support measure, it has been announced by Longford/Westmeath Fine Gael TD, Deputy Peter Burke. This measure is being introduced to reduce the cost to farmers of imported forage (hay, silage, haylage, alfalfa ) from outside the island of Ireland.
The measure will operate through the co-operatives/registered importers and will cover forage imported from August 12 to December 31 2018 and will be subject to EU State Aid (de-minimis ) rules.
Upon the announcement, Deputy Burke noted the urgent for the allocation of such fodder crisis related funds.
“In light of the recent severe drought conditions and their impact on an already difficult fodder situation, the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed, has introduced a support measure contributing to the cost of importing fodder from abroad. This additional commitment to securing adequate fodder supplies builds on a range of supports already put in place.
“As was the case in the earlier fodder import measure of last spring, participation will be straightforward for the farmer who contacts a participating Co-op/registered importer and purchases fodder. The Department of Agriculture will subsequently reimburse the Co-op/ importer with a contribution towards the cost of transport,” Deputy Burke commented.
The Deputy added that the fodder situation would be monitored closely on an ongoing basis.
“This measure will provide a valuable extra source of fodder, complementing the range of initiatives the Minister has already introduced this summer focused on maximising the production of fodder from our own land resources. We will continue to monitor the fodder situation closely and work with all stakeholders until we have successfully addressed the issues around fodder availability,” the Deputy concluded.
Application forms and terms and conditions are made available through the Co-ops/registered importers shortly and will also be available on the Department’s website at https://www.agriculture.gov.ie/farmerschemespayments/