Press Release 03-04-2018
Independent TD Mattie McGrath has called on the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, to urgently clarify what additional measures he is taking in order to offset the crippling fodder crisis that is afflicting the farming sector. Deputy McGrath was speaking after he called on the Minister to provide details about the effectiveness of the fodder transport subsidy scheme that was announced in January of this year:
“While I accept that the Minister does not want to interfere in local fodder market supply, he must offer firm guarantees that everything that can be done will be done to ensure that fodder is available in adequate amounts to farmers who are struggling under the wet and cold weather conditions.
We know from information provided to the Dáil that his Department underspent almost €80 million last year.
That amount would be more than sufficient to fund the introduction of transport reimbursement scheme or the meal voucher scheme that has been requested by so many including the Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA). We need to see action on these fronts immediately.
The unfortunate reality at this stage is that the only thing the prolonged bad weather has helped to flourish and grow is the levels of anxiety that farmers and farming families are experiencing.
The Minister must clarify what exactly is being done and then get that information out to the farmers on the ground as soon as humanly possible,” concluded Deputy McGrath.