IFA National Livestock Chairman Angus Woods has strongly encouraged suckler farmers to apply for the new €40 per cow BEEP (Beef Environmental and Efficiency Pilot) scheme.
He said the scheme is open for application online at agfood.ie, by post by contacting the Department of Agriculture at 076-1064420.
Angus Woods said the closing date for application is Friday February 22nd 2019.
The IFA Livestock leader said it is easy to apply for the new BEEP scheme as all it takes is a signature, date and herd number. No other information is required to make the application.
He said IFA fought a hard campaign in the last Budget and secured additional funding of €20m for sucklers and it is very important that farmers apply for the scheme. He said the €40 payment per cow for sucklers is not enough and the IFA are seeking a targeted payment of €200 per cow for sucklers.
In terms of requirements under the scheme, Angus Woods said suckler farmers will be required to weigh their cows and calves once during the year and submit the data to ICBF.
He said the Department of Agriculture will make 400 scales available to farmers through the co-op marts around the country. He said it is essential that costs to farmers for this service are kept to an absolute minimum. In addition, farmers will be able to use their own scales.
Angus Woods said the IFA are campaigning hard to increase the level of targeted direct payments for sucklers. He said as a very low income vulnerable sector Agriculture Minister Michael Creed and the Department will have to deliver a substantial increase in direct supports to sucklers both from national resources and CAP funding.