Advance payment of Single Farm Payment is welcome news for farmers – Breen

June 30th, 2011 - Pat Breen

Payments to be brought forward from December to October

Chairman of the Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs and Clare T.D. Pat Breen has strongly welcomed the decision by the EU Commission to bring forward the awarding of the Single Farm Payment (SFP), following representations made to the EU Commission by the Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney.

Two weeks ago Deputy Breen endorsed Minister Coveney’s assertion that there was a strong case for an advance payment for Ireland.

“I was hoping for a positive response from the Commission. Farmers will now be able to draw down 50% of their SFP from 16th October instead of having to wait until December as previously intended.
“The Single Farm Payment forms an increasingly significant part of farmers’ annual income. The news that this payment will be available two months earlier than originally planned will make a big difference for Clare farmers.

“Minister Coveney made a strong case at the recent meeting of the Council of Ministers for the payment to be brought forward and, in doing so, showed himself to be in tune with the challenges that farmers are facing.”

“In the current economic climate, the SFP has become increasingly important, especially considering the difficulties people are having accessing credit. Cash-flow is paramount for farmers, particularly those on low incomes, and the timing of these payments is extremely important.

“Farmers are more and more reliant on the SFP to subsidise the running costs of their farms. Very often the payment constitutes an amount greater than the net farm income.”