Tipperary farming: Minister urged to renew Beef Finisher Payment for 2021
ICSA beef chair Edmund Graham has called on Minister McConalogue to renew the Beef Finisher Payment for 2021.
“Further financial aid for beef finishers is essential to ensure as many farmers as possible can emerge from this prolonged Covid-19 crisis,” he said.
Mr Graham said that while prices had picked up in recent weeks, these increases in no way mad up for the months of savage price cuts beef farmers had to endure in advance of that.
“Farmers have also had to contend with massive increases in the costs of inputs. It all adds up to beef finishers moving further and further away from achieving anywhere near the actual cost of production,” he said.
The beef chair warned that the writing was now on the wall and that beef finishers needed further financial support for losses incurred on cattle sold from last November to at least the end of April 2021.
Mr Graham said the Beef Finisher Payment worked well last year and the scheme could be replicated with relative ease this year.
“The scheme did what it was supposed to do, and bureaucracy was kept to a minimum. Crucially, there was no destocking clause and factory owned animals were not eligible,” said Mr Graham.
He also said that the scheme had helped the winter finishers who had needed it most and had also provided an indirect boost to suckler farmers when it came to the autumn sales
“It is clear the same support must be provided for this year,” he said.
The EU’s Covid-19 recovery fund was there to facilitate such a scheme, but we needed to see action from the Department officials on accessing these funds and delivering these supports to the farmers who needed them most, he said.
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