The Dairy Beef Calf pilot programme – launched by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine – closed for applications this week with more than 8,000 applications submitted.

In a brief comment on the matter, a spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine said:

“The Dairy Beef pilot programme also closed at midnight on April 26, 2021, having opened on March 16, 2021.

“A total of 8,185 applications have been received.

The department also provided a county-by-county breakdown of applications submitted.

CountyNo. of applicationsCountyNo. of applications

This is the first year of this scheme, the department said.

In terms of where the most applications came from, Co. Cork accounted for easily the most submissions – with 1,566 made from the ‘Rebel County’, the only county with over 1,000 submissions and almost twice as many as the next county.

In a distant second place is Co. Tipperary, which accounted for 830 applications. Finally, rounding off the three counties with the most applications is Co. Limerick with 566 submissions.

On the other end of the scale, just 13 applications came from Co. Dublin, 48 from Co. Louth and 56 submissions from Co. Leitrim.

Dairy Beef Calf measure

With a budget allocation of €5 million, the stated objective of this dairy beef scheme is “to increase the economic and environmental efficiency of beef from the dairy herd, and to facilitate further the integration of the dairy and beef sectors by providing support for farmers who are rearing progeny from the dairy herd”, according to the department.

The core action is the weighing of eligible calves for which there is a payment of €20 per calf up to a maximum of 20 calves.

Under the terms and conditions of the scheme, you must weigh a minimum of five eligible calves and submit the weights to the ICBF.

All weights should be submitted within seven days of weighing and before November 1, 2021. Calves must be at least 12 weeks old at the time of weighing. Payments will be made in December 2021.