Sinn Féin spokesperson for agriculture Claire Kerrane TD and her colleague Matt Carthy TD have introduced legislation to establish a commission on the future of the family farm.

Sinn Féin wants to establish a commission which would bring together stakeholders and experts tasked with bringing forward proposals aimed at allowing farms not just to survive but to thrive over the rest of this century and beyond.

The legislation was introduced at first stage in the Dáil on Tuesday by Deputies Kerrane and Carthy.

Protecting the family farm

Deputy Kerrane said: “This legislation is about protecting the family farm, responding to and planning for the challenges family farms face and bringing forward comprehensive and practical recommendations on how this can be done in a proactive way.

“It is about taking action to sustain family farms, recognising their value to our island and to our communities, economically and socially.

“We have also incorporated accountability into the legislation to ensure we do not establish a talking shop – their recommendations will go before the Dáil, each recommendation made by the commission will be responded to be Government and, if being rejected, the reason why, with a clear timeline to be given on implementation.

“Sinn Féin believes that, with the right engagement and appropriate supports, the future of our family farms can be secured for many generations to come," she said.

Deputy Kerrane said that the commission would be charged with examining the needs of the family farm as they contribute to biodiversity protection and emissions reductions, but also to set out the necessary supports to ensure the continued economic viability of the family farm while they do so.