The TAMS costings need to be “urgently reviewed” following updated guidelines on VAT 58 reclaims, according to a Fine Gael MEP candidate for Midlands North West, Nina Carberry.

On Tuesday, June 4, Revenue has clarified a number of items which are, and are not, eligible for a VAT reclaim by non-VAT registered farmers.

Carberry said that there is uncertainty among farmers around VAT reclaims on farm investments, and that farmers who invest in items that improve animal welfare, labour efficiency and environmental action should be supported.

She added that the revenue has clarified a number of items that are not eligible for a refund, however many would be eligible under the TAMS scheme.

“Take automatic calf feeders for example. A four-station computerised calf feeder has a reference cost of €13,680 excluding VAT under TAMS while the true cost from widely quoted prices is closer to €18,500 excluding VAT.

“Farmers will not only find themselves paying a significant VAT bill, but the grant aid is falling well short of the true cost of the investment,” Carberry said.

The Fine Gael MEP candidate said that the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) could “soften the blow” for farmers by reviewing the reference costs under TAMS and bring them “in line with reality”.

She added that all the tranche 1 applications have been processed so the department has access to “verifiable receipts” from farmers to compare against current reference costs.

“We should not be deterring farmers from investing in their businesses to make them more efficient and sustainable. This review needs to take place urgently,” Carberry said.


New guidance was published by Revenue yesterday (Tuesday, June 4) on the application of the VAT Refund Order for flat-rate farmers.

The legislation sets out that farmers can only claim refunds for VAT in relation to:

  • The construction, extension, alteration or reconstruction of farm buildings or structures;
  • The fencing, draining or reclamation of farmland;
  • The construction, erection or installation of qualifying equipment for the micro-generation of electricity for use mainly in the farm business.

Revenue stated that “mobile or moveable farm equipment and machinery are not allowed under the order”.

This means that farming equipment not covered by the Flat-Rate Farmers Refund Order includes automatic calf feeders, cow mats – not fixed – robotic scrapers and slurry bags.