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IFA in Brussels

Following the passing of the EU regulation on the €100m Brexit beef fund in Brussels today, IFA President Joe Healy said Minister Creed must ensure the funding is paid out to the farmers who have incurred the losses and need it most, as soon as possible. He said the clearance of the regulation paves the way for the Department of Agriculture to pay out the funds to farmers.

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The Irish Farmers’ Association has demanded that EU Trade Commissioner Cecelia Malmstrom take beef off the table in the EU/Mercosur negotiations.

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IFA will hold four open farmer meetings for the candidates running in the European elections in May.

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BXL EU coming up

Find out  here  what will be discussed in the different European Institutions during the next week


IFA President Joe Healy said that the Teagasc Annual Review figures released today come as no surprise to anyone involved in farming. He said that the report confirms that 2018 was an extremely difficult year for farming, in large part due to unprecedented weather conditions. The knock-on effects of this, such as the increased cost of fuel inputs and an increase in feed use per head eroded margins on Irish farms. He said that while the report expected some recovery in 2019, this is very much dependent on factors outside of farmers’ control.

The IFA President said that it was more critical than ever for Government to step-up and provide certainty to a sector that employs over 300,000 people directly and indirectly. He said, “Farming, like any other large sector needs a certain level of certainty. While factors such as the weather are beyond our control, there are other ways that farming and the agriculture sector can be protected. Average farm incomes are 40% of average earnings in other sectors across the EU. On cattle rearing and sheep farms, direct payments account for up to 115% of average farm income. These direct payments must be maintained, at a minimum.

“The medium-term outlook for agriculture is very uncertain, not least as a result of policy and trade issues stemming from Brexit. 2019 is a critical year, given the decisions that will be made on CAP post-2020. Farmers need an increase in the CAP Budget to at least keep pace with inflation and to support farmers, in order to provide some small level of security, ” he said.

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