Department clarifies grant eligibility of young farmers

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has clarified the eligibility of young farmers who are not yet fully qualified, but are currently still in education for grants and schemes.

AgriLand put the question to the department as to whether young farmers who are enrolled in courses for the Green Cert, but have not yet completed the certificate, are eligible for TAMS II (Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Schemes) and other grants and schemes.

The department responded, firstly clarifying the term ‘young farmer’. It noted that a young farmer is a person who is not more than 40-years-old at the time of submitting an application under TAMS II and meets the requirements of being set-up for the first time within five years of the date of receipt of an application under the scheme.

Applicants must have completed the educational qualification within 36 months from the date of issue of the department’s approval to commence works.

A full list of courses is available in the schemes terms and conditions on the department’s website.

Where the deadline for completion of educational requirements is not met, grant aid will be paid at the standard rate of 40%.

However, it must be noted that applicants must have completed the half-day Farm Safety Code of Practice course if the Green Cert has not been completed at the time of lodgement of an application for payment.

The ‘young farmer’ category of the 2017 National Reserve and the 2017 Young Farmers Scheme was available to successful applicants who were 40-years-old or less and had successfully completed an agricultural educational qualification – giving rise to an award at FETAC Level 6 or equivalent by the closing date for applications under the schemes of May 15, 2017.