The ICSA Rural Development chairman vowed to help families stay on farms at a recent meeting:

At a meeting in the ICSA offices, ICSA Rural Development chairman Seamus Sherlock announced that the association is committed to helping farmers whose loans have been sold off to vulture funds. At the packed meeting Mr Sherlock said ‘I would like to assure farmers that ICSA will support each and every member in their quest to find a reasonable solution to their financial problems’.

Continuing, Mr Sherlock said that ‘it is important that every angle is explored to find a satisfactory compromise for both sides which will enable the farm to be retained by the farm family’. He added that fire sales and quick fixes will not be tolerated while other avenues need to be considered:

“Every farmer’s position is different and must be handled on a case by case basis. In certain cases selling part of the asset might be the preferred option, particularly for older farmers who may have little or no interest in a long-term restructuring plan.

“For others who wish to remain in the industry, every effort must be made to find solutions in order to facilitate the farm family remaining on the land. This will require fresh thinking and, in certain cases, a long-term repayment plan.”

Concluding, Mr Sherlock wished to reassure all ICSA members that they are not alone and that ICSA will endeavour to work with vulture fund administrators and farmers to find reasonable compromises that will keep the family farming the land for years to come.