The IFA has called on the Department of Agriculture to continue the Sheep Welfare Scheme, which is due to conclude in December 2020.

National sheep chair Sean Dennehy said: “The Sheep Welfare Scheme has been positive and effective. Sheep are significant contributors to environmental preservation, particularly in hill and mountainous areas.

“With 34,000 flock owners, sheep farming is the second-largest sector in terms of farm numbers.”

Focused agenda

The IFA met with Department officials on Friday 18 September to discuss its proposal.

Dennehy continued: “We were clear about what sheep farmers need - a targeted payment of €30 per ewe through a combination of CAP transition and national funding.”

Other issues discussed at the meeting with the Department included Brexit, the collapse of wool price and establishing a potential working group for the sheep sector.

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