Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed has today announced details of his department’s budget for 2019 .

Speaking this afternoon, the minister said: “My priority has been to deliver measures designed to help farmers to navigate the challenges of Brexit.

“I also wanted to support those in the most disadvantaged areas, while maintaining the ambition for the development of the food industry.”

Referring to Brexit, Creed said: “I have made provision for a Brexit Resilience Package of €78 million for the agri-food sector for 2019.

This includes a range of measures to support farmers and the industry against the background of the challenges that lie ahead.

Commenting on Brexit preparedness within his department, Creed said that he had provided €7 million for staff and IT costs arising from additional import control and export certification requirements – arising as a result of Brexit.

Referring to continued investment in the rural economy and on-farm schemes, Creed said: “Our commitment under the Rural Development Programme (RDP) for 2019 is €638m.”

This includes a commitment under the agri environmental measures of €203 million and €70 million for targeted agricultural measures.

An additional €23 million will be allocated to farmers in Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC), bringing the total allocation for 2019 to €250 million.

A €20 million Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot (BEEP) scheme has also been introduced. It’s targeted at suckler farmers and is aimed at “further improving the economic and carbon efficiency of Irish beef production”.

An additional €1 million in funding will be allocated to the horticulture sector, bringing the total provision for the sector to €6 million.