The Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) saw a €700,000 increase in income from membership fees to €6.3 million this year, according to its latest accounts.

In 2020, memberships resulted in €5.6 million in income for the association.

The financial statements for the year ended March 31, 2021 were signed off on, at a meeting yesterday (Tuesday, December 14).

The documents show that IFA had a operating surplus of €1.5 million this year, compared to an operating deficit of €1.9 million in 2020.

The group’s income rose almost €600,000 in a year to €15.7 million, with the documents showing that all income was earned in the Republic of Ireland.

The accounts also reveal that levies increased by almost €39,000 to €2.8 million this year.

Income from broadband and phone service sales increased slightly in the year by €35,500 to €5.7 million; however, €5.6 million was spent on IFA telecom expenses.

IFA costs

The statements show that overall expenditure was €14.1 million this year, compared to €16.2 million in 2020.

The accounts reveal that total staff costs fell by over €620,000, from €5.5 million to €4.9 million.

There was a significant fall in voluntary costs, which provides on farm relief for officers, from over €1.1 million to €430,000.

The statement shows that the gross salary paid to IFA president, Tim Cullinan this year was €90,430.

The accounts show that a programme, funded by reserves, which was requested by IFA national council to reduce staff costs is continuing.

The IFA anticipated that “these exceptional costs will generate ongoing savings to the association which, coupled with other measures, will restore the organisation to a position of surplus”.

Communication costs for the IFA reduced from almost €500,000 to just over €260,000 and public relations expenditure tumbled from €550,000 to €150,000.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, foreign travel costs were negligible; the 2020 accounts show that €63,000 was spent on overseas trips.