JUST about half of Galway’s grain crops were in the soil up to last weekend in what has turned out to be one of the latest Springs in living memory due to the poor weather since last Autumn.
Galway IFA Grain Committee Chairman, John Daly, told the Farming Tribune that inevitably the grain acreage would be down in the West of Ireland this year due to the poor Spring conditions.
“Out spell of bad weather is going back to the time of the Galway Races and now it won’t be long until the Races are coming around again.
“I think that most farmers agree that it has been one of our longest ever winters although at last growth has begun to pick up over the last fortnight,” said John Daly.
He has welcomed the assurances given by EU Agricultural Commissioner, Phil Hogan, and the Dept. of Agriculture on the easing of what is known as ‘the three-crop rule’ for this year to give grain growers a bit more flexibility in the corn they sow.
The three-crop rule requires farmers with over 30 hectares of tillage to grow at least three crops while a farmer between 10 and 30 hectares is obliged to grow at least two crops.
“We would have welcomed an earlier announcement on the three-crop rule but at least belatedly if does offer some flexibility for growers this year, and especially so for those who couldn’t sow their usual winter crops, due to the weather and ground conditions,” said John Daly.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.