Macra na Feirme has called for a €200/hd payment for beef finishers to meet rising input costs.
The organisation has also appealed for support on behalf of this “crucial” group of farmers in the food supply chain in light of the “expected continued” rise in feed and fertiliser prices.
The farm group stated that the cost of inputs has prompted finishers to question the feasibility of purchasing cattle this springtime.
In recent weeks, the rise in feed costs and the uncertainty around availability later in the year have resulted in beef finishers, once again, “facing an uncertain future”.
The group said farmers are making decisions over the next number of weeks in terms of purchasing cattle that they will either finish off grass this summer and autumn or finish from the shed next winter.
John Keane, national president of Macra na Feirme, said:
“To give certainty to these farmers, the Minister for Food, Agriculture and the Marine must now fund a beef finisher scheme similar to that implemented in 2020 and funded under the COVID-19 State Aid Temporary Framework.”
“Given the uncertainty around the war in Ukraine and the potential impacts on food security and the supply chain, continuance action is needed now for this cohort of farmers who for years have been operating in negative margins.”
Beef support scheme
He said we are in “unprecedented” times, and the Minister for Agriculture must act now.
Keane said the minister has committed to acting to help and assist Irish farmers.
“This is a key action that benefits the beef finisher, who, in turn, support farmers back along the supply chain,” he added.
Macra na Feirme feels that the best way to assist beef farmers is to introduce a scheme similar to BEAM that the DAFM introduced in 2020 with a doubling of support for beef finishers.