Returning Unused BAR Funds Would be Huge Failure – IFA

IFA President Tim Cullinan has called on Government to seek an extension to the Brexit Adjustment Reserve (BAR) deadline, and ensure greater flexibility so farmers get their fair share.

‘We met with Minister McGrath and Minister Donohoe recently to outline our Budget ‘24 priorities, and made it very clear that it would represent a huge failure for BAR funds to be returned when farmers across all sectors need support. To date, we estimate only 5% of Ireland’s BAR funding has been allocated to farmers. We need more flexibility, time and targeted on-farm interventions,” he said.

“Brexit has already hit farmers hard, and there is more to come as the UK expands its trade negotiations. The tripling of Australian lamb exports and the fourfold increase in Australian beef exports to the UK market in August shows the risk to our exports. Our analysis shows that €300m of Irish beef and €75m of Irish lamb could be displaced in 2024 from the UK market due to these new trade deals,” he said.

IFA has lobbied hard for €300/suckler cow and €30/ewe to be delivered to help support our most vulnerable sectors.

“Minister McConalogue and his officials can’t use the lack of budget as an excuse this year for not delivering, when they could potentially be sending millions of unused BAR funding back to the EU,” he said.

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