Rising input costs, the reduction in CAP payments, successive budget cuts to agriculture and greater exposure to volatile world commodity markets are threatening the viability of family farms.
Teagasc estimates the average family farm income will have dropped by 9% last year to €24,000. This represents less than 60% of the average industrial wage. We need policy priorities that have at their core the need to deliver a fair return to family farms to ensure the future sustainability and growth of the agricultural industry and a vibrant rural economy.
Measures to deal with price volatility
More than ever, farmers are exposed to the extreme price volatility of world commodity markets which is threatening the sustainability of family farm businesses.
- Government agencies including Teagasc must take a leading role in the promotion of price risk management tools and the training of farmers in risk management; and,
- Pressure at EU level to overcome “State Aid” restrictions and allow the introduction of taxation instruments which are necessary to help farmers deal with income volatility.