Farm Business

Support for Land Transfer Is Crucial for Generational Renewal

IFA Farm Business Chair Rose Mary McDonagh has identified some key priorities following the recent publication of “The Farming Sector in Ireland: A Profile from Revenue Data” by The Office of the Revenue Commissioners.

“The report highlights the struggle of generational renewal. 37% of farmers are aged over 60, while only 24% of farmers are under 40. However, the report also points out the value that tax reliefs provide to incentivise transfer and succession,” she said. (see table below)

Rose Mary McDonagh said agriculture is a low-margin, highly capital-intensive business which requires investment in its primary asset – land, and the reliefs are imperative for greater land mobility and to encourage land transfer. Along with reliefs under the stamp duty code and Young Trained Farmer reliefs, they are vital to the sustainability and viability of the agricultural sector. Moreover, they align with one of the nine objectives of the CAP – generational renewal.

“In 2018, Capital Gains Tax Retirement Relief was worth, on average, €355,795 to each claimant. On average, between 2014 and 2019, Capital Acquisitions Tax Agricultural Relief has been worth €104,492 to each claimant. The Succession Farm Partnership Credit was introduced in 2017 and there was a 66% increase in the number of those who availed of the relief in 2018.”

“In 2019, Consanguinity relief from Stamp Duty on non-residential transfers was worth, on average, €17,009 per claimant. In addition, there has been a 58% rise in the number of Young Trained Farmers claiming relief from Stamp Duty between 2013 and 2019.”

The Farm Business Chairman emphasised the importance and critical nature of these reliefs to the agricultural sector in order to encourage farm transfer.

The report provides a snapshot of farm incomes, farmer age profiles, the uptake of tax reliefs, and the incidence of farm transfers and succession.

At farm level, Average Farming Income in 2018 was €20,886 and Average Gross Income was €47,029.

The report underlines that average farm incomes are below the industrial average and must be supplemented with off-farm employment.

Relief/CreditYearNo. of claimants
Succession Farm Partnership Credit2018290
Capital Gains Tax Retirement Relief2018322 within families


420 outside of families

Capital Acquisitions Tax Agri Relief20181,413
Young Trained Farm Stamp Duty Relief20191,128
Consanguinity relief for Stamp Duty on non-residential transfers20191,605

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