IFA Rural Development Chairman Michael Biggins has encouraged farmers considering on-farm investment to review the new TAMS 3 list of eligible investments.
IFA has campaigned to have some farm upgrades added. These are now eligible for grant-aid, including cattle underpasses, farm roadways and fencing.
“One of the glaring omissions from TAMS 3 is the removal of dribble bars from the list. They were hugely popular in TAMS 2 and with a clear need to meet our emissions ceiling, the move to exclude them doesn’t make sense. Trailing shoes are not suitable for use on many smaller farms. Removing dribble bars will now force those farmers to use contractors who are already overstretched at key slurry-spreading times of the year,” he said.
“It beggars belief that Government grant-aided dribble bars for farmers in derogation to meet their mandatory obligations using Low Emissions Slurry Spreading (LESS), yet now as thresholds for using LESS lower, they decide to exclude dribble bars and force those farming at much lower intensity levels towards more expensive LESS options. We are asking the Minister to revisit this and look at including dribble bars in the next tranche of TAMS 3,” he said.
“Farmers who maximised their investment ceiling under TAMS 2 now have a clean slate again in TAMS 3, with higher investment ceilings. With inflationary pressures still very much evident and increasing investment costs on-farm, farmers should maximise whatever support they can,” he said.
‘While the terms and conditions are yet to be released, TAMS 3 appears more comprehensive than its predecessor and will lead to significant increase in demand, particularly in the likes of solar. This increase in demand will need to be matched with similar ambition in terms of funding to ensure farmers of all sectors and sizes are able to get financial support under TAMS,” he said.
IFA will be meeting with the Department of Agriculture in the coming days to further discuss the above issues relating to the new TAMS scheme.