Michael Creed appointed Minister for Agriculture

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny has announced Cork TD Micheal Creed as his Minister for Agriculture.

It comes following a day of tense negotiations between Fine Gael and Independent TDs over a programme for government which included a significant number of agriculture proposals.

Creed was first co-opted to Cork County Council in 1987. He was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 1989.

He has held several positions on the Fine Gael front-bench including; Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, 2007 – 2010, Health 1989 – 1993, Youth & Sport in 1993-1994 and Education; Arts, Culture & the Gaeltacht in 1994. He was the Chairperson of Cork County Council for the period 2005/06.

A Macroom native Creed is married to Sinead and has three children and takes over from out going Minister Simon Coveney who has now taken over the Housing and Local Government portfolio.

The last 48 hours has seen intensive negotiations between Fine Gael and Independent TDs including the so-called ‘Rural Five’ and the Independent Alliance.

Negotiations have centred on a programme for Government document which according to reports could well have significant proposals on agriculture policy.

Key Agriculture Measures In The Document Include:

  • Ireland will propose a lowering of the CAP on Basic Payments to from €150,000 to €100,000 in the Mid-term review of the CAP
  • A mid-term review of the Rural Development Programme in late 2016
  • Increase funding to Disadvantaged Area payments by €25m
  • An expanded farm building grants scheme to include approval for mats for slatted sheds and rainwater harvesting
  • Development of a new scheme under the RDP for the sheep sector with a budget of €25m
  • Seek amendment to RDP to provide an increased payment to organic producers for the first 10/ha
  • Review of the Green Cert to ensure it is fit for purpose
  • Recognition for forgotten farmers group

Fine Gael negotiations with independents came as earlier this week Fianna Fáil agreed to facilitate an

Enda Kenny led Minority Government after striking a deal in a range of policy areas from Irish water to Garda numbers.

In relation to agriculture, both parties committed to fully implement Food Harvest 2020 and Food Wise 2025 as well as securing the future of family farms and support our fishing industry. However, clear policy decisions were not presented in the agreement.