The Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers’ Association (ICMSA) is hosting a webinar this week focussed on “unsustainable” farm debt.

The webinar, taking place on Wednesday (September 27) at 7:30p.m online via Zoom, will discuss possible solutions for farmers who have unmanageable debt, whose loans have been “sold on” or have land in receivership.

Speakers on the night will include Gary Digney, a qualified personal insolvency practitioner (PIP), and barrister Keith Farry.

The confidential event, which will be chaired by ICMSA president Pat McCormack, will provide farmers with an anonymous platform where participants are unable to see each other, but can ask questions through a chat box.


The ICMSA said that many of its members have reached out “in many different directions” in a bid to find help with their debts.

“It is imperative that all farmers now know that there are solutions available to unstainable debt.

“This solution lies in the form of engagement with a personal insolvency practitioner,” the farm organisation said.

“Following a process involving many parties, sales of mortgaged farmlands have been stopped, proposals agreed with creditors and solutions achieved,” the ICMSA added.

Farmers who are in this scenario are being urged to register in advance for the webinar with ICMSA.


According to the Teagasc National Farm Survey 2022, the average farm debt stood at €72,809 last year.

Two thirds of Ireland’s 15,319 dairy farms had related borrowings, compared to just over one quarter of cattle rearing and one third of ‘cattle other’ farms.

When farms without debt are excluded, the average dairy farm debt in 2022 declined by 8% year-on-year to €127,477.

The average debt on cattle rearing farms with loans declined by 9% to €27,435, with the equivalent figure on cattle other farms up 7% to €50,015.

Debt on sheep farms rose to €34,634, while the average debt on tillage farms with loans also increased substantially in 2022 to €78,375.