UFU welcomes proposal to speed up Agri-environment payments

Friday, 1 February, 2013

The Ulster Farmers’ Union has welcomed the Agriculture Ministers proposal to bring forward the release of this year’s Northern Ireland countryside management scheme payments by four months.  

UFU President Harry Sinclair said; “The UFU tabled this proposal to the Minister recently in a bid to ease the cash flow problems which are affecting many farm businesses this winter.  We are pleased that the Minister has responded positively and the speeding up of these payments will be a help to the farmers who are part of these schemes.  Last week the Minister made commitments to also pay LFA payments earlier than planned, this was also an initiative tabled by the UFU. With a 50% drop in 2012 farm incomes confirmed this week,  these types of policy decisions are absolutely essential to ease farmers cash flow problems this winter.   However more still needs to be done for example we are strongly urging DARD to facilitate the opening of approved finishing units for TB closed herds to assist farm businesses where cash flow problems are particularly serious.”