Extension granted for fertiliser and slurry spreading

An extension to the deadlines for spreading fertiliser and slurry has been granted by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed announced today.

The minister made the announcement earlier today (Sunday, August 12) as he officially opened the Tullamore Show and FBD National Livestock Show.

Speaking about the Tullamore Show, the minister said: “I am honoured to officially open this prestigious show which is the largest one day event in the annual shows calendar.

“Agricultural shows, such as Tullamore, are important events in the farming year contributing culturally, socially and economically to rural communities. I would like to acknowledge the work done by all in organising this event.”

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Minister Creed said: “Following consultation with my colleague, the Minister for Planning, Housing and Local Government, Eoghan Murphy T.D., I can announce flexibility on an extension to the closed period for spreading of chemical and organic fertilisers in order to capitalise on autumn grass growth for fodder production.”

The minister said that the deadline has been extended for chemical fertiliser from mid September until the end of September, and the deadline for the application of organic manures from mid October to the end of October.

“I think that gives us the opportunity to maximise the growing season and to conserve additional fodder.”

The minister further discussed the current period of dry weather and the impact on grass growing conditions, saying: “While some respite has been provided in the form of a return to a more normal growing season recently, the situation remains challenging in many parts of the country for farmers attempting to conserve fodder to make up any shortfalls.

The over-riding priority is to maximise fodder production from all available land. This is the most cost-effective approach and of greatest benefit to most farmers.

Minister Creed concluded saying: “I and my department have been engaged in a series of initiatives and I believe that these measures taken together and targeted at producing as much fodder as possible from our own land provide the most effective response to a fodder shortfall.

“Imports of fodder will have a role to play in the range of options available. My department will assist in this regard and further details will be announced in due course.

“However, the immediate priority is to maximise fodder production at home and I believe the Fodder Production Incentive Measure for Tillage Farmers and GLAS flexibilities will contribute positively in this regard.

“I will continue to closely monitor the effectiveness of these measures in the coming weeks in closing the fodder gap.”