The Department of Agriculture has confirmed to IFA that the closing date for establishing catch crops under the GLAS scheme has been extended.

The closing date has now been extended from September 15 to September 30.

According to IFA, the extension only applies where the farmer or an advisor on the farmer’s behalf submits a completed application form.

These application forms are available through the Department’s website and completed forms must be returned by September 16, 2016.

In the absence of the receipt of a completed application form the original planting date for catch crops under GLAS remains September 15, 2016.

GLAS participants availing of the catch crop action must ensure they continue to comply with the requirements set out in the GLAS specification provided to each GLAS participant.

According to the IFA, the extension had been sought in light of this year’s late harvest and it was welcomed by IFA Grain Chairman Liam Dunne.

Dunne said that this positive move would ease the pressure on many farmers who are struggling to complete the harvest and to clear straw off fields as the weather deteriorates.

Requirements of catch crops under GLAS:

Farmers who plan to sow catch crops under the Department of Agriculture’s GLAS scheme are required to do so by September 15 unless confirmation is received that a completed application form has been received by the Department by September 16.

According to the Department, farmers are required to grow a minimum area of 10ha (priority action) or 4ha (general action) under the scheme using light cultivation techniques and by either broadcasting or drilling the seed.

Other requirements include:

  • Catch crops can be rotated from one year to the next, provided the initial area chosen continues to be delivered
  • The action can be delivered on full or split LPIS parcels
  • Where the action is on a split parcel it must be digitised out and marked on the map submitted with the GLAS application
  • The catch crop seed mix must consist of at least two species in an integral mix and one species must not account for more than 75% of the mix
  • The under sowing or sowing of grass crops is not permitted
  • The catch crops must remain in situ from the date of sowing to December 1 annually

Application forms are available from the Department of Agriculture’s website.