Clare T.D. and Chair of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade Pat Breen has said the new package of measures announced by the Minister for Agriculture to address difficulties in the dairy and pigmeat sectors is good news for Clare farmers.
“The award of almost €14 million in direct aid to Ireland is very welcome for Irish dairy and pigmeat farmers. Particularly positive is the decision made by the EU Commission to allow advance payments of 70% under the direct payments scheme and 85% for rural development schemes before completion of controls. These advance payments are expected to be made to farmers in Clare by mid-October and should significantly ease cash flow.
“This package from the EU Commission is the result of hard work at a European level by the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney and reflects the majority of the demands presented by the Minister to the Commission in a six point plan.
“The increase of more than 100% in the rate of private storage aid for skimmed milk powder is a very significant announcement. Together with the longer storage period now provided for, this will have a real impact on the market. The reintroduction of private storage aid for cheese and pigmeat and the improved aid rates and conditions will also help to bring the markets back into balance.
“These measures will help ease the current difficulties faced by many Irish farmers and the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney has pledged to continue to work on this issue.”