Tillage Farmers Facing Huge Losses

IFA National Grain Chairman Kieran McEvoy said many tillage farmers are facing into a serious loss-making situation, with feed spring barley and winter wheat incurring significant losses per acre, particularly on rented land.

Analysis completed by IFA shows that a 2.6t/ac spring feed barley crop grown on rented land is losing approximately €125/acre, even after all direct payments.

High land rents – inflated by new nitrates rules – and declining CAP payments are hammering tillage farmers this year.

“The combination of declining CAP payments; very high input costs; moderate to poor yields from a difficult growing season; high land rental costs; and atrocious weather in July and early August are all coming home to roost now,” Kieran McEvoy outlined.

“While the weather has improved over the past 10 days with better ground conditions, many farmers still have winter barley straw unbaled and a significant portion of spring barley crops yet to harvest,” he continued.

Many of the later sown malting barley crops are now facing very high rejection levels. 

“We are urgently seeking a meeting with Boortmalt on this issue as something has to be done to alleviate the losses farmers are facing due to the high rejection levels,” he said.

“Tillage farmers are facing huge financial losses this year. It’s now clear that we will need further Government support if this sector is to still stand still, let alone increase its land area in the coming decade. Otherwise, we will see a massive contraction in our tillage area in the coming months and years,” Kieran McEvoy concluded.

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