IFA MAKES CASE FOR HILL FARMERS IN BRUSSELS

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IFA MAKES CASE FOR HILL FARMERS IN BRUSSELS

IFA Hill Committee Chairman, Pat Dunne has said that opportunities exist for hill farmers though greater support for hill areas in the Rural Development Programme if the right approach is taken by Government.

Speaking in Brussels at a seminar on common ground for EU hill farmers, Pat Dunne said that measures such as agri-environment schemes and Areas of Natural Constraint payments could play a greater role if they were better targeted to hill farmers, where incomes are under severe threat.

Pat Dunne told the seminar that current schemes in operation in Ireland are a lifeline to thousands of farmers but that the review of the Areas of Natural Constraint which is due to take place over the next couple of years is an opportunity to give higher payments to reflect natural handicap. The onus will be on the Government to put additional resources into the ANC Scheme so that it has a much more meaningful role than it currently plays.

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