Beef Finishers Payment to issue ‘this week’

Payments under the Beef Finishers Payment (BFP) are set to begin issuing this week, the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) has said.

IFA President Tim Cullinan welcomed the development that payments will begin going out to farmers under the €50 million scheme.

The funding was allocated for the scheme in June to compensate beef farmers for losses arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Many recipients of these payments will already have invested in replacement stock during the autumn, so the value of these payments will benefit the whole sector.

“Not all of the money for the scheme will be allocated. Any underspend must be used to cover animals which were excluded from the scheme because they were exported,” the IFA president insisted.

News of the issuance of payments was also welcomed by Brendan Golden, the IFA’s national livestock chairperson.

“It was important that the government introduced this scheme, and that the money is now getting out to farmers,” he noted.

A spokesperson for the Department for Agriculture, Food and the Marine told AgriLand that payments will begin issuing from tomorrow (Wednesday, November 18).

‘Significant Support Required’ For Agriculture

In other news, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue told his European counterparts that “significant and ongoing support will be required” for the agriculture sector due to challenges facing the market.

Speaking at a meeting of EU agriculture and fisheries ministers yesterday (Monday, November 16), held via video-conference, Minister McConalogue said: “The agri-food sector is still significantly affected by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and is also facing into the eye of the storm as the end of the Brexit transition period looms.

“Significant and ongoing support will be required in order to keep supply chains operational and to prevent the collapse of a vital sector,” he added.