The Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney, has been called on to immediately announce the criteria of the Hardship Recognition Scheme, by ICMSA President, John Comer.

Comer said concern was beginning to grow in the absence of details of the scheme for farmers affected by the flooding.

He called on the Minister to announce the criteria so that farmers who have been severely impacted by flooding can assess their eligibility.

“While the fodder replacement scheme has been put in place – and is very welcome development – the second scheme is equally important.”

Comer said that many farmers are suffering serious damage to sheds and equipment, including electrics, that will be very expensive to repair in light of the flooding and may not be covered by insurance.

“We’re also aware of cases where farmers were unable to milk cows or have milk collected and have thus suffered a substantial cut in income with others having to move stock to other locations with significant costs involved.

The total number of farmers involved may be fairly small but the losses are significant and it is very important that this scheme covers such losses.

“No-one who has seen these cases and talked to the farmers involved can doubt the need for support and practical help to be given as quickly as possible and, with that in mind.”

He called on Minister Coveney to publish the details and requirements for consideration in the Hardship Recognition Fund at the earliest opportunity for those affected by the flooding.