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Grants to Irish farmers will total €4bn over the next six years.

They include supports for being environmentally friendly and for investment.

There's a grant for specialised cattle breeding.
There's a grant for specialised cattle breeding.
Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

GRANTS AND SUPPORTS for Irish farmers will total €4 billion over the next six years.

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney has announced details of the Rural Development Programme (RDP) 2014-2020 which he says demonstrates a “commitment to a strategic investment in rural Ireland”.

The RDP is backed by the EU and the plan for Ireland’s allocation will now be submitted to the European Commission for approval.

Environmentally friendly farmers are entitled to grants of up to €7,000 per year under the Agri-Environment Scheme (GLAS) and a top-up for farmers who take on particularly challenging actions. The budget fot theses programmes are €1.45 billion over the six years.

There are also additional supports for farmers who work in difficult areas and a specific grant for farmers based on an island.

Others details of the six-year plan include:

  • €395 million for On Farm Capital Investment.
  • €44 million for Organic Farming.
  • €295 million for cattle breeding programmes.
  • €112 million for Knowledge Transfer Measures.

“The new Rural Development Programme has been developed following an extensive process of stakeholder consultation over the last 18 months,” Minister Coveney said.

The submission of Ireland’s Programme to the European Commission marks a further important step building on the successful negotiation of a new Common Agricultural Policy under Ireland’s Presidency of the European Union.

Read: ‘There’s much more to Macra than farming’ >

Read: Coveney: Irish beef will be on American shelves by autumn >

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About the author:

Rónán Duffy

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