The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue has today (Tuesday, May 24) confirmed that 128,360 farmers applied online for their 2022 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) by the deadline of May 16.

The minister noted that the figure is in line with application numbers for previous years.

In addition, 33,207 Transfer of Entitlement applications were made to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) by the deadline.

Applications were also made for the Greening Scheme, Young Farmer Scheme, Protein Aid, Straw Incorporation Measure (SIM) and Areas of Natural Constraints Scheme (ANC).

However, the department did not supply data on the number of applications for these schemes.

Farmers who made their BPS online-application by the deadline can make changes at until midnight on Tuesday, May 31.

The department also noted that every year it receives a number of late applications.

There is a 25-calendar-day period after May 16, for the acceptance of late applications and any necessary supporting documentation.

However, farmers should note that deductions to payments, at a rate of 1% per day, will apply to late applications.

BPS application supports

Minister Charlie McConalogue said that his department put a range of supports in place to help farmers make their online applications.

BPS clinics were held in 20 locations around the country in April and May, providing one-to-one assistance to farmers.

“I am very pleased that over 800 farmers were assisted at the BPS clinics and at the public office in Portlaoise to submit their application,” the minister said.

“My department made hundreds of calls to farmers in the run up to the deadline, for example if a draft application had not been submitted online, and over 15,000 calls were answered by the Direct Payments Helpdesk during the application window.

“We continue to assist farmers with their applications and to work to ensure that important financial supports such as the BPS are paid to farmers in the most efficient way possible,” McConalogue continued.

“These payments are crucial to our farm families and their businesses so it is encouraging to see such a strong response this year,” he said.

This year, the crops declared on the BPS application will also determine eligibility for the Tillage Incentive Scheme and the Protein/Cereal Mix Crop Scheme.

“My department is continuing to review the BPS applications and will write to eligible farmers in June to invite them to apply for the schemes on,” Minister McConalogue concluded.