What’s available for young farmers in a farm partnership setup?

There are benefits accruing to young farmers in a farm partnership under both Pillar I and Pillar II of the Common Agricultural Policy and the Minister for Agriculture outlined these partnership benefits recently.

With regard to Pillar I the following is relevant for those in or looking at a farm partnership setup:

Pillar I

Young farmers, farming in a partnership including a farm partnership with a parent, who fulfil the conditions set out above, are eligible for participation in both the National Reserve young farmer priority category and the Young Farmers’ Scheme.

Successful farm partnership applicants will potentially be eligible for an allocation of entitlements at the National Average value on land for which they hold no entitlements (on the basis of 1 entitlement for 1 hectare of eligible land declared).

In respect of existing owned entitlements with a value below the National Average, they will potentially receive a top up whereby the value of those entitlements will be increased to the National Average value.

The allocation of entitlements and the 25% top-up to the value of existing entitlements is subject to a maximum of 90. A successful applicant under the Young Farmers Scheme will receive payment under the Scheme for a maximum period of five years based on their date of setting up the holding.

Click here to see criteria for National Reserve and the Young Farmers Scheme

In accordance with relevant EU Regulations to be eligible under the Young Farmer priority category of the National Reserve and the Young Farmers Scheme an applicant must meet the following conditions:

– S/he is participating in the Basic Payment Scheme in the year in which s/he submits an application;

– S/he is aged no more than 40 years of age at any time during the calendar year in which s/he first submits an application under the Basic Payment Scheme;

– S/he has successfully completed a recognised course of education in agriculture giving rise to an award at FETAC level 6 or its equivalent. Alternatively s/he must commit to commencing such a course by 30 September 2016;

– Has a gross off-farm income that does not exceed €40,000 in one of the tax years 2013 or 2014;

– S/he is setting up an agricultural holding for the first time or has set up such a holding during the five years preceding the first submission of the Basic Payment Scheme application

Click here for eligibility of Young Farmer(s) in a Group - National Reserve Young Farmers Category


Where a Young Farmer undertakes the farming activity as part of a group e.g. in a joint herdnumber, a Partnership or a Company, the group will be considered eligible if the following conditions are met;

 At least one person in the group must meet the definition of Young Farmer as outlined in
section 2.1 above;

 That Young Farmer must exercise effective and long term control either solely or jointly
within the group in terms of decisions related to the management, benefits and financial
risks of the group. Such control is demonstrated as follows:

  • the Young Farmer’s name is on the herdnumber;
  • the Young Farmer’s name is on the bank account used for the purposes of the
    farming activity;
  • Companies Only – the young farmer must be a Director and minimum 20%
    shareholder in the Company;
  • all persons who participate in the group must complete a National Reserve/Young

Farmers Scheme Declaration form confirming that the Young Farmer has effective control, either solely or jointly with the other members of the group. This declaration form is available with the scheme application form and on the Departments website.

Click here for eligibility of Young Farmer(s) in a Group - Young Farmers Scheme


Where a young farmer undertakes the farming activity as part of a group e.g. in a joint herdnumber, a partnership or a company, the group will be considered eligible for the Young Farmers scheme if the following conditions are met;

 At least one person in the group must meet the definition of Young Farmer as outlined in section 1.1 above;

 That Young Farmer must exercise effective and long-term control either solely or jointly within the group in terms of decisions related to the management, benefits and financial risks of the group. Such control is demonstrated as follows:

  • the young farmer’s name is on the herdnumber;
  • the young farmer’s name is on the bank account used for the purposes of the
    farming activity;
  • Companies Only – the Young Farmer must be a Director and minimum 20%
    shareholder in the Company;
  • all persons who participate in the group must complete a National Reserve/Young

Farmers Scheme Declaration form confirming that the young farmer has effective control, either solely or jointly with the other members of the group. This declaration form is available with the scheme application form and on the Departments website.

With regard to Pillar II the following information for a farm partnership is relevant:

Pillar II – Rural Development Programme

Anyone looking at a farm partnership should note that one of the proposals in Ireland’s draft Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020, which is now with the EU Commission for approval, is an enhanced capital investment scheme for young farmers under the TAMS measures.

The new scheme will offer a specific grant rate of 60% compared to the standard grant rate of 40% which will be generally available under other on-farm investment schemes. The specific areas of investment available to young farmers will include animal housing, slurry storage, dairy equipment, specialised slurry spreading equipment, animal welfare and farm safety, and specialised pig and poultry investments, as well as capital investments for organic farmers.

In addition, young farmers will be able to avail of grant-aid for construction of new dairy buildings. Young farmers farming in a partnership including a farm partnership with a parent, registered with the Minister’s Department will also be able to avail of the full suite of investments under this Scheme and also avail of a doubling of the investment ceiling.

The EU Commission approval referred to above will be required before any new national measures are introduced on the basis of the Programme. It is expected that approval from the EU Commission will issue shortly.

Areas of Natural Constraint

Under the Areas of Natural Constraints Scheme, which has replaced the Disadvantaged Areas Scheme, special provision is made for applicants, who are in a farm partnership and registered under Irish National Regulations.

The payment to the farm partnership under that Scheme will comprise of total individual calculations based on the area of ANC land each partner contributes to the farm partnership and individual threshold limits will apply at measure level for individual farm partnership members.

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