Young farmers will receive a top-up on the industry support payment the Minister for Agriculture has announced and it will, as previously expected, be on a flat rate basis.

The Minister for agriculture, Simon Coveney, made the announcement at Macra’s annual rally in Cork on Friday night.

Farmers are to share the spoils of the €13.7m European fund which will aim to support struggling farmers during a difficult cash flow period, he said.

We will make the same payment to every dairy farmer, but young farmers will receive a top on this payment.

According to the Minister, the definition of a young farmer will remain the same as previously classified under other schemes.

The flat rate basis of the scheme is necessary, he added, to avoid discrimination against smaller producers as payments based on production would be favourable to the larger volume producers.

Farmers could receive payments before Christmas

According to the Minister, he plans to make these payments before Christmas and he added that he hopes to make these payments “during a low milk price period as this is when they will be most beneficial”.

Speaking to Agriland after the announcement the Minister added that there is a possibility that this €13.7m fund which was made available by the European Union could be added to by the exchequer.

The Minister also added the industry is trying to break free from the shackles of tradition while also trying to improve the innovations on-farm.

We need to look forward and to continue to challenge the norms and mindsets that are there so we can introduce new and innovative thinking.

It is an industry that is facing real challenges, we have to prepare for price volatility into the future.