Some €42m in payments under the Beef Environmental Efficiency Programme (BEEP) have commenced, according to Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue.
Over 30,000 farmers participating in BEEP will receive payments over the coming days.
McConalogue said the programme’s two initiatives for sucklers (BEEP-S) and dairy (Dairy-Beef) build on the range of support schemes available for beef farmers.
McConalogue described how the BEEP-S scheme helps to increase economic and environmental efficiency in the suckler herd.
He said improving suckler performance data supports the adoption of best practice and more informed decision making at farm level.
“The BEEP-S programme targeted the weaning efficiency of suckler cows and calves, measuring the liveweight of the calf at weaning as a percentage of the cow's live weight.
“In recognition of the important role of animal health and welfare issues, participants were also encouraged to implement a number of optional health and welfare measures including pre-weaning meal feeding, vaccination programmes and faecal testing.”
Minister McConalogue outlined the “core action for the Dairy-Beef scheme” as the weighing of eligible calves for performance monitoring.
“There was a payment of €20 per calf up to a maximum of 20 calves.”
“The dairy-beef scheme helps to increase the economic and environmental efficiency of beef from the dairy herd and facilitates further the integration of the dairy and beef sectors.”
He reminded farmers that BEEP payments have been secured for next year also as part of Budget 2022.
“[This] underlines my ongoing commitment to the beef and suckler sectors.”