Fianna Fáil has promised a €50m increase in Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) money and a €60,000 limit on CAP money in its general election manifesto.
The party has said that additional financial resources are necessary to ensure that farmers on the most disadvantaged lands are maintained and that lands do not fall into disuse and disrepair.
This, it said, will underpin a more regionally balanced and sustainable farming system across Ireland.
It has pledged to allocate an additional €50m above 2020 levels to bring the ANC scheme funding to €300m per annum. In terms of biodiversity, it has said it will:
€60,000 limit on CAP money
In terms of the CAP and direct payments to farmers, the party said it will “secure national ceilings at EU level on individual CAP payments and restrict them to €60,000 in Ireland to safeguard the family model of farming”.
It has pledged to work with European colleagues to ensure a fully-funded, fair and simpler CAP that safeguards direct payments.
Under the CAP, it promises to:
For suckler farmers, Fianna Fáil said that while the Beef Data Genomics Programme (BDGP) plays an important role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the Irish beef herd, the administrative burden and low returns of the government’s scheme continues to undermine this vital industry.
It promises to reform and simplify the BDGP and ensure a €200/head payment on the first 20 cows. The approximate cost of this measure will be €46m in additional funding.
It also said it will continue to support and develop live exports.
National food ombudsman
This week, Micheál Martin promised a beef industry regulator to oversee the beef trade.
In the party’s manifesto, this regulator will take the form of a national food ombudsman, which will cost €2.3m. The ombudsman is to “protect primary producers in national law and ensure fairness and equity in the food supply chain”.
It will also enforce prohibited unfair trading practices and “enhance price transparency”.
Anaerobic digestion (AD) strategy
A national strategy for anaerobic digestion (AD) has been mooted by the party in order to “exploit the full potential of bio-gas production and bio-economy in rural Ireland as a key economic stimulant of future jobs in rural areas”.
Organic, tillage and horticulture
Fianna Fáil has put organics, tillage and horticulture into the one bracket in its manifesto. For these sectors, it has said it will deliver on the following:
For forestry, Fianna Fáil said that if elected it would work at EU level to get recognition of the estimated 660,000km of hedgerows throughout the Irish landscape as a carbon sink.
It pledged to restore the annual forest premium rates to pre-2009 levels for grant and premium categories, with a priority put on broadleaves in order to incentivise the planting of native species. The cost of delivery on this is €5.8m.
Other forestry promises include:
Other points of note
The Fianna Fáil manifesto also vowed to deliver the following: