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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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5 common errors farmers make when submitting their BPS application

Teagasc has urged farmers to complete their BPS (Basic Payment Scheme) application correctly ahead of the deadline.

At this stage, most farmers will have received their 2022 Basic Payment application and maps via post.

This form is the application for many schemes, for example:

  • Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme;
  • Young Farmer Scheme (YFS);
  • Basic Payment;
  • GLAS;
  • Organic Farming Scheme.
BPS application 

Before your meeting with your advisor, check all maps and documents carefully. You should any changes that you wish to make on the 2022 application.

If there are to be any changes to your farm enterprise, Teagasc urges farmers to talk with their advisor ahead of the appointment, in case you need to prepare anything extra (for example, making a name change to the herd number).

The state body advises farmers to make a list of items for discussion. This will ensure that both you and the advisor get the most from the consultation.

You may also want to discuss other issues such as increased fertiliser costs, farm finances, increases or reductions in stock numbers or plan an investment.

If you need to make a further appointment as a result of your discussion, you should do so immediately.

BPS application: Common errors 

According to Patricia Lynch, drystock advisor, Teagasc Westport, the common errors at Basic Payment Application are:

  • Not stating that a lease of entitle­ments was not renewed when it expired in the previous year;
  • Not informing the advisor that the ownership of the herd number is / or has changed;
  • Forgetting to add on extra land or withdraw a parcel no longer farmed;
  • Forgetting to reapply for the Young Farmer Scheme (tick box or new appli­cation if no tick box);
  • Not following up with the auctioneer when leasing out entitlements.
Deadline date:

The deadline for all schemes (BPS, NR and YFS) is Monday, May 16th, 2022.

As has occurred in other years, you can make amendments after applying up until the end of May.

CAP 2023

Lynch acknowledged that there will be “many” changes to the direct payments farmers receive in 2023.

She said that some farmers will gain while others with higher value entitlements may see their payments decrease.

“While the new schemes will not begin before January 1st, 2023, farming activities you undertake in 2022 may impact your payments from 2023. “

“Examples include the ‘active farmer check’ and some eco-scheme options.”

“Your consultation with your advisor for this year’s Basic Payment is also a good time to look ahead to 2023 to assess how these changes might affect your future farm income,” she added.

Farm payments in 2023

Last week, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine launched a payment calculator and a stocking rate calculator to help inform farmers of the changes in the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) for 2023-2027.

The payment calculator allows farmers to calculate their indicative direct payments in 2023, including payment entitlement values.

To complete the payment calculator, a farmer will require the following information:

  • Number of hectares;
  • Number of entitlements;
  • Your BPS and greening value per entitlement.

Farmers can use the stocking rate calculator to calculate stocking rates in terms of Livestock Unit and Kgs of Organic Nitrogen per Hectare.

To complete the stocking rate calculator, you will need the following information:

  • Total area in grassland and tillage you will farm this year;
  • Expected livestock numbers and age per month this year.

Farmers can access the calculators through the DAFM’s website. They can also access step-by-step guides on the same webpage.

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