A total of 129,000 farmers have applied online for their 2019 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in advance of the Wednesday, May 15, deadline.

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed has confirmed receipt of the applications today, Thursday, May 16.

According to a statement from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, this figure is in line with application numbers for previous years.

In addition, over 21,140 transfer of entitlement applications have been received online.

Commenting on the close of the BPS applications, Minister Creed said: “I am very happy to confirm that farmers have applied for the BPS online again this year.

“My department has put a huge effort into helping farmers make their applications online and this has paid off. These figures build on the success of last year’s move to 100% online applications.”

Where farmers have made their BPS online application, but now wish to make an amendment, they may make such changes online at: www.agfood.ie until midnight on Thursday, May 31, without penalty.

There is a 25-calendar day period after the May 15 closing date for the acceptance of late applications and any necessary supporting documentation.

However, deductions to payments at a rate of 1% per day in respect of BPS payments will apply to late applications which are received during this period.

Continuing, Minister Creed said: “If a change made to a BPS online application leads to a farmer having insufficient land to use all of their entitlements, they will have the opportunity to submit a transfer of entitlements application up until midnight on May 31.”

Concluding, Minister Creed said: “My department will continue to work to ensure that important financial supports such as the BPS are paid to farmers in the most efficient way possible.”