At a meeting with the Department of Agriculture, IFA called for an early decision to allow for the extension of key farm schemes, such as GLAS and TAMS.
IFA Rural Development Chairman Michael Biggins said that 36,000 farmers, who are currently in GLAS 1 and 2, need certainty that their plans will be extended into 2021 and beyond if necessary, under EU CAP Transitional rules.
“It is vitally important that a decision to extend GLAS plans is made soon as the last thing farmers need is uncertainty and a rush to get extensions in before the end of the year,” he said.
The IFA Rural Development Chairman impressed upon the Department the need for a simple process to extend plans and that payment levels must be fully maintained for all farmers.
In relation to TAMS, the Department confirmed to IFA that Tranche 19 will close on Oct 31st and that Tranche 20 will close on Dec 31st. The Department also confirmed to IFA that 4,688 farmers have applied under Tranche 18, which closed in August. 70% of those will shortly get an approval to proceed.
The IFA Rural Development Chairman pointed out that the carryover of applicants from one Tranche into another is totally unsatisfactory and he called on the Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue to sort this out.
“Like GLAS, an early decision on an extension to TAMS is now important as the investment plans of farmers must not be put on hold pending a new investment scheme in the next CAP. IFA is seeking an additional allocation of €38m in next week’s Budget, to bring the total allocation for TAMS to €120m,” he said.
The Department pointed out, that so far this year, they have spent €54.8m out of a total allocation of €82.5m. IFA is encouraging farmers to make their payment claim as soon as possible.