Inspectors to take ‘common sense’ approach towards storm-hit farms

Storm-weary farmers will not be penalised under direct payments schemes for any damaged fences or grazing, Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney has said.

He said his department will seek to support farmers facing hardship due to the ongoing storms, and that a common- sense approach will be taken with farm inspections.

Inspectors are aware slurry tanks are full or nearly full, and that some grazing farmland has been hit with large deposits of stone or debris, he said.

“Teagasc is already engaging with those clients who have been affected by bad weather. My department is also in close contact with farm organisations through the Farm Animal Welfare Advisory Council, whose members on the ground are very well placed to assess the situation,” said Mr Coveney.

While the majority of livestock are still housed and the supply of fodder is not an issue, there may be cases where farmers are faced with slurry tanks that are almost full and ground conditions not suitable for spreading.

Mr Coveney said there are ways of addressing this and he advised farmers to seek Teagasc advice.

He reminded farmers that the Animal Welfare Helpline all 1850 211990 continues to operate for those with animal welfare concerns.


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