Brexit: Irish government announces €100m fund for beef farmers

Herd of cows on farm waiting for feeding - stock photo Image copyright Getty Images

Irish beef farmers who are facing "market volatility and uncertainty" because of Brexit are to be given access to a €100m fund.

The Irish Minister for Agriculture said the Beef Exceptional Aid Measure will be funded by the government and the EU.

Michael Creed said it he was "keenly aware that the last number of months have been very difficult for beef farmers".

He said the scheme aims to provide financial aid to farmers most affected.

Mr Creed added: "There has been a prolonged and exceptional period of depressed prices since last autumn, with the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the outcome of Brexit, among other factors, contributing to this market disturbance."

He said this fund, combined with the Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot introduced earlier this year, provides "an injection of up to €120m" to the sector.

Farmers must meet certain eligibility criteria to qualify.

Eligible farmers are to get €100 per animal slaughtered between 24 September 2018 and 12 May 2019, covering up to a maximum of 100 animals per herd.

A payment of €40 will also be made on suckler cows that calved in 2018, up to a maximum of 40 suckler cows.

Dairy herds are not eligible for the measure, with the exception of dairy herds of less than 40 dairy cows.

Animals that are controlled by slaughtering establishments, and dealer/agent herds, are not eligible for the aid.

If it is oversubscribed, payment rates may be subject to minor revision.

The scheme will open for applications during the third week of August.

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