IFA president Eddie Downey revealed that former IFA general secretary Pat Smith earned a package in 2014 of €295,000 basic with a pension contribution of €150,000 bringing it to a total of €445,000.

Smith's 2013 total salary package was €535,000. The breakdown in 2013 was €295,000 basic salary, a €150,000 pension contribution, €60,000 bonus and €30,000 in director's fee for his role in IFA Telecom.

A company car was included in both years.

Smith resigned on Thursday following a meeting of IFA's executive board. An emergency meeting of the association's 53-strong executive council met on Friday afternoon where there were calls to understand Smith's total remuneration package after two weeks of speculation.

The IFA also revealed that the salary package of each subsequent general secretary will be made known in the annual report published each year, the Irish Farmers Journal can reveal.

Eddie Downey confirmed that executive salaries within the organisation are comparable and in line with those in Government departments and State agencies that the IFA deals with on a regular basis.

More to follow on www.farmersjournal.ie

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Pat Smith: 25 years at the IFA