The Irish Farmers' Association (IFA) is calling on Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, to lift the requirement that commonage management plans must be complete before the final 15 per cent GLAS 2017 payment is made.
IFA Hill Farming Committee chairman, Flor McCarthy, said this is necessary due to serious cashflow difficulties on hill farms as a result of the fodder shortage, which has meant many farmers had to pay for expensive feeding to maintain their sheep.
Mr McCarthy said that 9,000 commonage farmers are due their final 15 per cent GLAS payment, worth around €7m. But the payments are in danger of being delayed as this final payment is contingent on having commonage management plans fully completed, according to the IFA.
The IFA is urging Minister Creed to pay all farmers their final 2017 payment and to extend the deadline to later in the year. This is also a very busy time for planners, according to the IFA, as they complete farmers Basic Payment Scheme applications, which all have to be done online this year.