Budget 2023: Farming Measures
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, has confirmed a 13% budget increase on last year’s allocation for his department.
The minister revealed that the 2023 estimates provide a gross vote of €2.14 billion for the DAFM.
This, he added, is the highest ever level of funding for the department and represents an increase of €283m on the 2022 provision.
Furthermore, he outlined that it lays the groundwork for strategic supports for the sector over the next five years through the new €10 billion CAP Strategic Plan (CSP).
So, what is in Budget 2023 for farmers?
- More than €100 million in supports to “improve competitiveness and sustainability” in the beef and sheep sectors;
- Up to €500m to fund the roll-out of the new CAP Strategic Plan to support farm investment and encourage climate and biodiversity action – €200m to allow 30,000 new farmer participants into the ACRES scheme next year;
- €3m for each of the next four years, a total of €12m, to start a farm-based anaerobic digestion sector in Ireland;
- €13.3m to extend the Farm Environmental Scheme and funding for the Soil Sampling Scheme;
- Support to offset high fertiliser prices: Grant aid schemes for multi-species swards, red clover and a new €8m liming scheme;
- €10m in supports to encourage maintenance and new planting in the tillage sector;
- Up to €30m for a fodder support scheme, which the DAFM will pay in December 2022.
- New loan schemes for farmers, fishers and food businesses;
- Business Energy Support Scheme will address energy price increases for food businesses, including farmers;
Farm schemes and taxation supports:
- More than €218m for agri environment schemes, including ACRES and Locally Led Schemes to fund a large-scale water scheme on farms and a new call for new EIPS in Q1 2023 on biodiversity, climate, rural environment and farm safety;
- A 12% increase to €112m to fund the new national forestry programme;
- €37m for the Organic Farming Scheme;
- An increase in TAMS to €90m to fund the proposed increase to 60% grant rate and a standalone investment ceiling of €90,000 for solar panels on farms next year;
- Continued support for state agencies, including Teagasc, supporting our agri-food and fisheries sectors and the strategic development of our equine sector and the improvement of traceability and welfare standards in our greyhound racing sector;
- Key agri-taxation supports;
- New tax measures for better slurry storage and management, to protect water quality and reduce dependence on chemical fertilisers.
- Increase in research budget to €20 million boosts support for the funding of research and innovation projects, with a new National Call due in 2023. Additional funding will build and enhance previous research to deliver an evidence-base for the challenges faced by the sector.
Suckler and sheep supports
- Increased resources for farm safety, including a dedicated budget of €2.5m. Among the initiatives will be an expansion of On Feirme Ground to vets and a development of a resource on best practice for animal handling units and calving pens;
- Targeted beef and sheep supports of €105 million: Suckler Carbon Efficiency Programme), the Sheep Improvement Programme, and welfare measures for beef and dairy beef calves – will support the reduction of emissions intensity for participating herds and flocks;
- Minister to seek EU Commission approval for a new scheme to continue beef welfare measures previously funded under BEEP-S. This new scheme will sit alongside the new €150/cow Suckler Carbon Efficiency Scheme and a €20 million Sheep Welfare Scheme.
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