Over 500 BFP applications lodged ‘under appeal’ with no eligible animals

Over 500 applications were submitted “under appeal” for the Beef Finishers Payment (BFP) meaning the applications were made under a herd number but where no eligible animals were recorded in the reference period, according to the rules of the payment.

These 548 applications are separate from the 28,095 total ‘valid’ applications made under the scheme.

However, a spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine told AgriLand that “a case is being made for their [the 548 applications] inclusion in the scheme”.

The spokesperson said that these 548 applications will be assessed in the coming weeks and some of them will be approved for inclusion in the scheme.

When the details of the scheme were first announced, the definition of an eligible animals was as follows:

  • Slaughtered in the reference period from Saturday, February 1, to Friday, June 12, 2020;
  • Aged eight months or more when slaughtered;
  • Resident on the qualifying herd for at least 30 days prior to slaughter (if not, the previous owner is eligible for payment if he or she is an applicant and has had the animal for over 30 days on his or her holding);
  • Not identified on department systems as presented for slaughter by, or on behalf of, a factory;
  • Subject to a cap on payments, whereby the cap is 100 eligible animals per herd.

The 28,095 applications made to the scheme (apart from the 548 under appeal) account for 465,888 animals.

The maximum rate of payment per animals is €100. If the maximum rate is paid on every animal, then the total payout would be around €46.5 million, out of an earmarked budget of €50 million.

Payments under the scheme are scheduled to begin in November.

County-by-county breakdown

Below is a county-by-county breakdown of number of applications and number of animals.

Data source: Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine

As can be seen, by far the highest number of both applications and animals came from Co. Cork, with 4,305 applications and 66,689 animals.

The second-highest figure for both applications and animals came from Co. Tipperary. Here, 2,408 applications were received, accounting for 46,021 animals.

The third highest number of applications was from Co. Galway, with 1,970. However, the third highest number of animals claimed on (by county) came from Co. Kilkenny, with 30,933 animals (from 1,363 applications).