Dairy farmers in a number of other EU countries may be compensated by their national governments by up to €15,000 a year on a temporary basis.
In addition farming organisations may arrange for a cut in milk production by farmers who are hard pressed to find markets for their produce, according to proposals from European Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan.
He has been under pressure from French and other governments to help farmers who have watched the bottom fall out of the milk market at a time when the 30 year-old quota system was abolished.
Most of the rise in milk production over the past year has come from Irish and Dutch farmers. Mr Coveney said that Irish farmers were not pushing for quotas to be reintroduced having prepared for four years to compete in a market where there were not restraints.
“I want to see Irish farmers ready to take advantage of an improving milk price that we will see in time, and they will be very well placed in how ever many months that happens,” he said.
He welcomed a series of other measures that Commissioner Hogan announced including a doubling for skim milk powder and butter intervention, aid for cheese storage, new export credit tools and new aid for private storage for pigment.
The president of the ICMSA, John Comer said they did not object to a subsidy being paid to farmers not to produce milk, but it must be voluntary.
They would have preferred a combination of a raised intervention price to 28 cents per litre and a drastic upgrade of storage volumes to take big quantities out of the market.
The Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association said they would oppose any move to support dairy farmers from the crisis reserve fund built up from deductions from the basic payment to farmers.
The focus must be on regulating the food chain since consumers pay enough to ensure a fair price for the farmer, but the money is being taken by processors and retailers.