Minister Michael Creed has announced an extension of the Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot (BEEP) scheme, allowing farmers to weigh cows and unweaned calves and to submit the data to ICBF.
Animals may now be weighed up to and including November 8, and weight data is to be submitted to ICBF (Irish Cattle Breeding Federation) by 5:00pm on November 15.
Commenting, the minister said: “As I announced last week, payments to the value of €2 million under BEEP have already issued to over 3,000 farmers that have completed the weighing and submission of data in respect of all of their eligible animals.
I have listened carefully to requests from farm bodies and have now agreed to an extension of a further week to the dates by which animals are to be weighed and weight data submitted.
“My department will continue to pay participants as individual cases are cleared, and regular pay runs will be in place over the coming weeks to ensure this,” the minister added.
Concluding, he said: “Farmers who have been contacted by my department with queries in relation to their applications should also respond at their earliest convenience in order to facilitate payment.”
So far, weight data in respect of some 350,000 pairs (dam and calf) has been returned to ICBF. The department will pay €40 per pair of animals to applicants who comply with the requirements.
By extending the closing date, the minster said he is “confident that many thousands more beef farmers can comply with the conditions in time to qualify for payment by the end of December”.