Just over 50% of the funds allocated to Irish agriculture under the EU’s COVID-19 recovery instrument (EURI) will be spent on TAMS.
Ireland’s rural development programme has been allocated €190m from the EU’s €7.5bn pot for agriculture.
A total of €96m has been ring-fenced for TAMS by the Department of Agriculture.
Demand for grant aid has remained high throughout the lifetime of the scheme and investment on farms has shown no sign of slowing. Farmers and planners are anxiously awaiting details of further TAMS tranches, with the current tranche due to close in mid-April.
The next highest allocation is for the Organic Farming Scheme. It has secured an additional €40m to incentivise more farmers into converting from conventional farming methods.
There will also be a €20m allocation to the LEADER programme
Along with a rollover for existing farmers in the scheme, it was reopened for a limited number of new applicants aimed at increasing the total number of farmers in the scheme to 2,000.
The tillage sector will benefit to the tune of €20m from the EURI fund. This will be used to roll out the straw incorporation measure for the next two years, with €10m on offer per year.
There will also be a €20m allocation to the LEADER programme, which provides grants to support rural communities and local businesses.
A number of the smaller initiatives announced in Budget 2021 will also be financed from the recovery fund.
Of the €190m fund, €56m (30%) will be spent this year
These include €3m for a peatland rewetting scheme, €3m for locally led climate and environment schemes and €2.5m for health and safety initiatives on farms.
Of the €190m fund, €56m (30%) will be spent this year. The Department has until 2024 to spend the remaining 70%.
The spending proposal has been considered by the Rural Development Programme monitoring committee which consists of Department and semi-state officials, as well as representatives from farm organisations and other bodies.