Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, today (Tuesday, October 31) announced the commencement of advance payments under the 2023 eco-scheme.

The advance payments worth a total of €184 million will be issued to 106,137 farmers.

The minister confirmed that 89% of eligible eco-scheme applicants will receive an advance payment in the coming days.


The eco-scheme has been introduced for the first time as part of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Strategic Plan 2023-2027 and replaces many elements of the previous Greening Scheme.

The eco-scheme rewards farmers from all sectors for undertaking actions that are beneficial to the climate, environment, water quality and biodiversity.

Minister McConalogue said the commencement of the advance payments marked an “important milestone”.

“Eco-scheme payments are a vital support for farmers who are delivering environmental and biodiversity benefits.

“The payment rate is €67 per eligible hectare,” he said.


The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) wrote to farmers in March and September outlining the schedule of scheme payments this year.

Some payments were delayed due to the rollout of schemes under the new CAP.

“I am committed to ensuring that all scheme payments continue to issue in the most efficient way possible to ensure that these vital supports are delivered to farmers in a timely manner.

“Payment dates for 2024 will revert to the normal timeframe from previous years, once the complexities of delivering a totally new payment system have been worked through,” Minister McConalogue said.

“The eco-scheme advance payments are commencing today at a rate of 70%.

“Payments will be visible in farmers’ bank accounts in the coming days and the department will continue to process, as a matter of urgency, all remaining cases for payment as they meet scheme criteria.

“I would urge any farmers with outstanding requests for documentation from my Department, to return them to allow payments to issue,” he added.

Payments under the 2023 Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) and the 2023 Basic Income Support for Sustainability (BISS), which started in recent weeks, are also continuing as more cases are cleared for payment.

The minister reminded farmers that payments can take up to five days to appear in their bank account depending on their financial institution.

To facilitate farmers wishing to contact DAFM regarding their eco-scheme, BISS or ANC payments, extended hours are in place for the Direct Payments Helpdesk.

From today until Friday, November 3, the helpdesk will be available up to 8:30p.m at 057-867 4422.

Farmers can also submit any queries they may have online via