Budget 2024 provided a boost to sheep farmers, with a new €8/ewe payment, to bring the Sheep Improvement Scheme payment to €20/ewe.

Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue allocated an additional €40m for ACRES and €21m extra for organics.

A payment of €200/suckler cow has been maintained, a €6.5m dairy calf-to-beef scheme continued and an €8m fund for tillage farmers is in place.

Farmers who import slurry will be able to avail of a 70% TAMS grant, with a new higher investment ceiling, yet to be confirmed, for all farmers installing slurry storage.

There was no breakdown of how farmers might benefit from the new €3bn climate and nature fund and no new supports for farm renewables. The Department of Agriculture’s budget fell by €199m on 2023 and now stands at just over 2% of Government expenditure.

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