The Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association have called on the Minister and his officials to redraft the proposed Suckler Carbon Efficiency Programme, which they maintain discriminates against suckler farmers.
Spokesperson Brendan Joyce, outlined how the INHFA had through the CAP consultative process sought direct support for the suckler sector through a coupled payment.
This, he stated “was included in our response to the Department of Agriculture Food & the Marine.
In subsequent discussions department officials indicated that their intention was to support the suckler sector through a welfare type scheme in Pillar 2.
The INHFA said what they have now produced is “anything but a welfare scheme.”
Mr Joyce says it is now time for the Minister to intervene to ensure the make-up and title of this scheme is altered to reflect what was agreed through the consultation process — that being a welfare programme similar to what is currently in place under the Beef Environmental Efficiency Programme but with higher payments.
With the consultation process due to close on the 27th of this month it is, Mr Joyce maintained “vital that the redrafting of a new suckler scheme is done in the coming days to give the sector time to reflect and provide feedback on the make-up of any new scheme.”