The Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine (DAFM) has developed a “preliminary outline” of a proposal to provide support to the group of farmers commonly referred to as ‘forgotten farmers’.
That is according to a spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine, who exclusively provided a statement in response to a query flagged by That’s Farming’s editor, Catherina Cunnane, to its press office, in relation to support for ‘forgotten farmers’.
As per the DAFM’s official definition, a ‘forgotten farmer’ is a term used to describe young farmers who had typically established their agricultural holdings before 2008, who were under the age of 40 in 2-15, but who did not qualify for the CAP (Common Agricultural Policy) supports as other young farmers did.
Farmers in this cohort were unable to qualify for young farmer supports introduced under the CAP in 2015 because, in many of their cases, they had been farming for five years or more.
That’s Farming previously published an article on the 5-year eligibility period for young farmers, which you can read about.
The current Programme for Government contains a commitment to seek to resolve, under the new CAP, the issue of support for ‘forgotten farmers’.
The DAFM spokesperson, in a statement to That’s Farming, outlined:
“This outline proposal would see a scheme launched to provide support to farmers who had established their holdings prior to 2008, were under 40 in 2015, did not have the opportunity to benefit from Installation Aid and were ineligible for access to young farmer supports from 2015.”
“The department continues to work on addressing issues in relation to the proposed scheme, including the funding required, before the details of the eligibility requirements and benefits to successful applicants under a scheme can be finalised.”
“Details of the scheme will be made available as soon as this process has been completed. Minister McConalogue has committed to supporting this cohort of farmers, many of whom find themselves in this situation through no fault of their own,” the spokesperson concluded.
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