Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) chairman Tim Cullinan, said confirmation that land classed as “Category 1” land under Natural Constraints Areas (ANCs) will now be eligible for the support scheme fodder is a “necessary development”.

“These lands should never have been excluded. The minister must act immediately to publish the revised terms and conditions,” he said.

“It’s the right thing to do. The exclusion of ANC Category 1 land from the terms and conditions was a dramatic goal of the Minister.

IFA Mountain Agriculture National Committee Chairman Cailín Conneely said we have yet to see full details of how the program will be changed, but IFA’s understanding is that all category 1 land under the ANC can now be applied if the farmer fulfills the other conditions. and conditions.

A spokesman for Agriculture, Food and Navy Minister Charlie McConalogue told Agriland.

“Minister McConalouge designed the Forage Support Program to help the dry livestock sector save the maximum amount of forage for next winter in the face of rising input costs.

“The Minister is exploring all options to ensure that as many cattle and sheep farmers as possible can access the €56 million scheme, which will pay these farmers up to €1,000 each to save money. silage or hay,” the spokesperson added.

The scheme, which was announced on Wednesday June 15, has been criticized for excluding farmers from certain restricted lands, many of whom are hill farmers.

According to the terms and conditions, land classified as “category 1” under the ANC scheme is currently not eligible for the €56 million measure.

Category 1 land is considered the most constrained land type under the ANC program and consists primarily of agricultural land on hills and mountains.