15th May 2015
ICSA president Patrick Kent has said that now that the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has identified up to 4000 ”forgotten farmers”, the Minister must take urgent and possibly innovative action to rectify this this issue.
“These farmers are part of a cohort who started farming from 2001 to 2009, have few or no entitlements per hectare but are still under 40 years of age, and the Minister must ensure that action is taken immediately to address this anomaly,” said Mr Kent.
“ICSA has always argued against the five-year rule, which we view as unnecessarily rigid. We need to look at the EU regulations to see if we can find the necessary flexibility in the national reserve or alternatively there may have to be amendments made at EU level.”
“Depriving these young farmers of a fair share of entitlements is unfair and unacceptable. We are talking about industrious young farmers who have built up an enterprise and have a track record of hard work. They are the future of farming and deserve support and encouragement just as much as those who already qualify for the National Reserve.”