Macra is meeting with An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on Monday 10 July to discuss its proposed succession scheme.

President of Macra Elaine Houlihan and CEO Mick Curran will present An Taoiseach with what the organisation is looking for in terms of funding for the scheme.

Monday's meeting, which will also be attended by Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Martin Heydon and Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys, will take place at 11am at Government Buildings.

Eight asks

A succession scheme was one of Macra's key asks during its 'Steps for our Future' protest in April, where members walked from Athy in Co Kildare to Government Buildings with a submission letter outlining eight asks to revive rural Ireland.

A Macra delegation managed to secure a sit-down meeting with the Taoiseach and relevant Ministers on the day they arrived in Dublin, and the Taoiseach agreed to look into the scheme.

Houlihan told the Irish Farmers Journal that she is hoping for a positive engagement with the Taoiseach and ministers on Monday.

"That's why I posed the question to Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue at Moorepark on Tuesday as to whether he was in support of the scheme or not. When someone says they're strongly looking at something, that's a positive thing," she said.

Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Pippa Hackett also told Macra this week that she is supportive of a succession scheme, Houlihan said.

"She said that there is absolutely a need for a succession scheme. We were surprised to hear that from her, to be honest," Houlihan said.

Other business

In other business, Houlihan said that she is going to look for rural planning guidelines which were promised, ask for a date of delivery for a forgotten farmers scheme, and press Minister Humphreys for a commitment on widespread rural broadband access.

"While progress on the succession scheme is our main priority, there are still those other issues. There are still farmers in parts of Ireland who can't put in calving cameras because they don't have access to WIFI," she said.

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