IFA President John Bryan said the decision made by the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to suspend the Targeted Agricultural Measures (TAMS) for further applications is a major blow to the on-farm investment plans of farmers and must be reversed.
Mr. Bryan said that the schemes, which were only open for application in recent times, are crucial for farmers to be able to meet the EU animal welfare standards in the case of pigs + poultry, and help modernise the sheep and dairy sectors. “While up to 2,000 farmers applications will be dealt with, the plans of many other farmers have been thrown into disarray by this suspension.”
The IFA President pointed out that pig and poultry farmers had a deadline to meet EU standards on animal welfare. Many of these farmers were at the point of applying with some awaiting planning permission from their local authority. These farmers must be allowed to proceed with their applications.
Mr. Bryan said that the Minister’s decision flies in the face of the target set for agricultural production in the Food Harvest 2020 Report. Also the fact that these schemes were only recently approved at the EU Commission and are 50/50 funded between the EU and the national Government makes the suspension all the more concerning.