Farmers are being reminded that the closing date for applications under the new reference period to meet the Beef Exceptional Aid Measure (BEAM) 5% reduction is on Monday, June 21 next.
Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) Livestock Chairman, Brendan Golden said all farmers in the scheme should apply for the extension to maintain maximum flexibility in meeting the scheme conditions.
“Farmers who apply for the new reference period will be provided with the option to meet the 5% reduction from the period January 1 to December 31, 2021,” he added.
“Most importantly farmers who apply for the extension but meet the requirements by the end of June will not be affected.
“They can accept their original reduction period and will be deemed by the Department to have met their obligations in the scheme.
“There are no downsides to applying for the new reference period and I am urging farmers to use this flexibility to their advantage by applying before the deadline of next Monday.”
The current reduction period is from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021, however, as a result of Covid-19 and the impact it would have on some farmers meeting their 5% bovine Nitrates reduction requirement, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine wrote to the European Commission in January 2021 seeking an extension of the reduction period.
The Department subsequently opened a facility on www.agfood.ie in March that afforded farmers the opportunity to indicate if they wished to opt for the later reduction period of January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021, in which to meet their 5% reduction requirement.
Since then almost 6,000 BEAM participants have opted to defer.