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Savage strike could scuttle hill farmers

Francis Farragher

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SAVAGE cuts in the Single Payment to farmers in the South Galway area – following an inspection blitz of a commonage by Dept. of Agriculture personnel – could spell the end of marginalised farming across the the Western Seaboard unless they are reversed, it was warned this week.

Farmers in the Keelderry Commonage – close to the Slieve Aughties – had 90% of their payments wiped out following the recategorisation of the land in the inspection that took place in 2011. The farmers in question lost between €4,000 and €10,000.

This week, North-West MEP, Jim Higgins, said that farmers who had mountain commonage shares in counties such as Kerry, Galway, Mayo and Donegal could be in real trouble if what happened in Keelderry was also put into place everywhere else.

Last week, MEP Higgins sought an independent investigation into the long-running dispute over the “unfair ah-hoc payments” to the eight shareholders of Keelderry Commonage, Galway – he told the European Parliament’s Committee on Petitions that his constituents have suffered “a gross injustice”.

“The farmers in question had been receiving farm payments under the Single Farm Payment and Disadvantaged Area Payment at a rate of over 90% at one time, which were later re-categorised and reduced to a level of 10%. Nearby identical farmland retained their full payments.

“They have had no real opportunity for redress due to an illogical appeal process within the Department which could take five years – a ridiculous amount of time for a group of small farmers to have to wait,” Mr Higgins said.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

New faces on IFA commodities committee

Francis Farragher

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A NUMBER of new faces will be elected onto the Galway IFA Commodities Committee in a postal vote that will begin next week and be completed by early December.

The most keenly contested position looks like being that of Rural Development representative with three candidates going for the job.

Eamonn Burke, Corrandulla branch, was the outgoing representative, but his term of office ends this month, opening the way for three new nominations.

They are: PJ Conroy, Looscaun, Woodford; Pat Flaherty, Oranmore and Peter Gohery of the Eyrecourt branch.

Rural Development is considered one of the more important positions in that it will be ‘fighting the case’ for the bigger spending areas such as REPS, GLAS and any new environmental scheme.

The other contest is for the position of Grain Representative which had been held by John Daly of Kilconnell, whose term of office is also up.

There are two nomination for this position – Eamonn Burke of Corrandulla and Mervyn Cooke of the Aughrim IFA branch.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Dosing changes will need watching

Francis Farragher

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Galway IFA Animal Health Committee Chairman, Stephen Canavan

THE Minister for Agriculture, Charlie McConalogue, has been advised to ‘keep his eye on the ball’ in relation to EU regulations coming down the track for the sourcing of livestock dosing treatments.

According to the IFA, new EU regulations due to come into force in 2022, would require farmers to get a prescription for a range of products including anthelmintics, used for the treatment of fluke and worms in cattle and sheep.

IFA Animal Health Chairman, Pat Farrell, said the new EU Veterinary Medicine Regulation had the potential to severely impact on competition in the supply of anthelmintics to farmers.

He also warned that because of a derogation in place in Northern Ireland as regards anthelmintics, the EU regulations would mean a two-tier supply system on the island of Ireland, leading to unregulated movement of products.

Galway IFA Animal Health Committee Chairman, Stephen Canavan, told the Farming Tribune, that the IFA wanted a continuation of the system where the stores and co-ops would have a suitable qualified person (SQP) to deal with the selling of such products.

“This regulation, if implemented in 2022, would have serious implications for farmers in carrying out their day-to-day farm work where for example they have dosing programmes in places for their livestock. We most certainly want the Minister for Agriculture and the Department to keep their eye on the ball on this issue.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Connacht Tribune

New TB test will not be a ‘runner’ say IFA

Francis Farragher

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Galway IFA Animal Health Committee Chairman, Stephen Canavan

THE Dept. of Agriculture have been accused of doing ‘yet another solo-run’ on bovine TB with their proposal to introduce a 30-day test for pre-sale movements at marts and from farm to farm.

Galway IFA Animal Health Committee Chairman, Stephen Canavan, told the Farming Tribune, said that news of the proposed new testing regime as revealed in last week’s Farmers Journal, came as ‘a bolt from the blue’.

“I suppose in one way we shouldn’t be surprised – the Department just keep coming up with these kinds of proposals without any agreement or input from farmers.

“We in IFA want to make it clear to the Department that this will be another non-runner. They went on one solo-run with the herd categorisation and now they’ve gone ahead with their next piece of tomfoolery,” said Stephen Canavan.

He said that there was absolutely no scientific proof or evidence that introducing this extra 30-day pre-movement test would in any way be a help in the campaign to reduce the incidence of TB in Irish herds.

“Either a farmer is clear or he’s not clear in terms of TB testing – there can be no in-between on this one.

“It is utterly ridiculous that a farmer after having two clear tests would end up a couple of months later having another test before he could sell stock at the mart or to another farmer.

“Who would pay for this test? Is this really just another way of taking more money from farmers whose herds have already had a clear test. It makes no sense at all,” said Stephen Canavan.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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