Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, has launched the €30m 2023 Fodder Support Scheme.
This scheme builds on the success of the 2022 Fodder Support Scheme, which attracted over 71,000 applicants.
According to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, each of them is due to receive an average payment of €735 shortly.
The 2023 scheme aims to incentivise farmers, in particular, drystock farmers to grow more fodder (silage and/or hay) in 2023 to ensure “Ireland does not have any animal welfare issues next year”.
Only successful applicants for the 2022 Fodder Support Scheme are eligible to apply for the 2023 scheme.
Like this year’s scheme, the initial budget for the Fodder Support Scheme is €30 million, with a payment rate of up to €100/ha.
The maximum area eligible for payment under the scheme is 10 hectares, with a potential maximum payment of €1,000.
Where the scheme is oversubscribed, the payment rate per hectare will be less than €100/ha.
In this scenario, the DAFM has stated that it will reduce the payment rate for all hectares or maintain the rate of €100 per hectare on the first few hectares and reduce it on the latter hectares.
Advance payments will commence next month, and will make balancing payments in quarter 4 2023.
The online application system for this scheme is now open. Farmers wishing to apply for the Fodder Support Scheme can do so either themselves or through their advisor up to midnight on December 5th, 2022, by logging on to the exceptional aid system on agfood.ie.
All applications, whether a farmer or advisor submits, must be made using the online system.
Minister McConalogue has urged all 71,000 eligible farmers for this scheme to apply in “good time and to ensure they read the terms and conditions of the scheme, which are available on my department’s website”.