The National Reserve will be reopened for young farmers and new entrants in 2020, according to IFA deputy president Richard Kennedy.

There will be up to €3m in funding for the 2020 reserve Kennedy said, following a meeting of the Department of Agriculture direct payments advisory committee in Portloaise on Thursday 23 January.

The fund will be financed from existing resources, unused entitlements and clawbacks on the sale of entitlements. Kennedy said it would not be necessary to have any linear cuts to entitlements to fund the reserve.

He said the conditions for the reserve in respect of education requirements and off-farm income would remain the same as previous years.


Since 2015, the National Reserve has provided cumulative payments worth €130m to 8,500 farmers. In addition, the Young Farmers top-up scheme has paid out €95m to 8,000 participants.

In 2019 alone, 900 farmers applied to the reserve, with 540 young farmers and 31 new entrants successfully securing funding to date.

Macra na Feirme president Thomas Duffy said: “The National Reserve is vital to aiding young farmers in becoming established and in supporting the process of generational renewal.”

Duffy said the support must be continued under transitionary arrangements and into the new CAP.

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