Farmers will receive €400/ha for every additional hectare of tillage they plant this year in proposals to be presented to Cabinet today.
Farm Secretary Charlie McConalogue is expected to present a package worth more than €12 million to help arable farmers increase the volume of crops grown in Ireland.
The targeted intervention package for the tillage sector aims to support the production of more native crops and crops with a low chemical fertilizer requirement.
The crisis in Ukraine has impacted Irish agriculture and supply chains, with hyperinflation in the prices of energy, animal feed, fertilisers, fuel, silage, plastics and other farm inputs.
Secretary McConalogue proposes three initial measures to support farmers and crop growing, including an Arable Incentive Scheme to encourage farmers to plant additional arable crops (e.g. barley, oats and wheat) in 2022.
It is understood that the proposed €400/ha may be higher for certain crops such as maize and fodder beet as production costs are currently being reviewed but considered higher.
It is expected that another 25,000 hectares of these crops could be cultivated in 2022, resulting in a total budget of 10 million euros.
Aid for protein crops is also expected to be proposed to encourage farmers to grow peas, beans and lupins, with a proposed payment of €300/ha.
It is also proposed to include combi crops (mixture of grains and proteins) in this initiative. The aim is to increase the area under cultivation for protein crops from 10,000 ha to 14,000 ha.
A proposed multi-species turf program is expected to provide around €2 million to plant 16,000 ha.
Minister McConalogue previously said he was working on a package that would initially focus on the arable sector,
given the tight window to plant crops.
“We live in unprecedented times. The illegal invasion of Ukraine has put enormous pressure on our supply chains,” he said.
“I quickly set up the National Feed and Food Safety Committee to look at how best to advise the sector to manage the disruptions.
“Given the narrow window we have for growing crops, we need to focus our support on the tillage sector. I am committed to standing by our farming families through this crisis and I will continue to do so in the time to come.”
The Committee will host its second meeting today at Teagasc Moorepark, presenting updates on ongoing priority actions by Teagasc and other organizations.
She operates on the premise that crops may not be grown in Ukraine this year, which could have a worse knock-on effect next year.
At its first meeting, it agreed that a number of time-sensitive priorities should be addressed to support farmers and stakeholders, particularly in the pig and poultry sectors.
The rising cost of fuel for contractors was also seen as a serious concern, with the quantity and quality of silage being a key focus this season.
Fertilizer availability remains a key issue for farmers.
https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/tillage/farmers-to-get-400ha-to-plant-extra-tillage-in-proposed-12m-scheme-41472194.html Farmers will receive €400/ha for additional tillage in the proposed €12 million scheme