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Mar 28, 2024 | Latest News, Press Releases | 0 comments

ICSA president Sean McNamara has said the convening of the National Fodder and Food Security Committee (NFFSC) tomorrow must kick start an emergency response to the ongoing difficulties facing farmers amidst continuing heavy rainfall. “With any hope of an early spring well and truly dashed and any fodder reserves dwindling fast it is clear this committee needs to rapidly reassess the current situation on the ground, including the extent of the fodder shortages and the impact of continued wet weather on farming operations,” he said.

“Crops are not going in the ground and cattle cannot be put out to graze due to saturated ground conditions. All this is causing enormous stress and is putting serious financial pressure on farm families. The situation is dire; it can no longer be ignored, and it will require a rapid emergency response. Ensuring the resilience of farms and the well-being of farm families in the coming weeks is paramount.”

Mr McNamara said the inability of drystock farmers to access credit is a major factor in the current crisis. “The reality is we have a financial crisis as well as a fodder crisis. If farmers need to access credit in order to feed livestock, then there needs to be flexibility shown from lenders and co-ops alike. The Government needs to get real on securing greater flexibility on short term finance for all farmers.”

“Tomorrow’s meeting needs to kickstart a coordinated response to the situation on the ground. The time for talking around the difficulties facing farmers is over and we want to see real action in the form of initiatives that will offer immediate assistance to farmers. This must include guarantees around access to short term credit for all farmers, the provision of emergency meal vouchers, the establishment of a fodder support scheme, and the curtailment of inspections.”


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