fodder crisis

  • Department of Agriculture officials are meeting with the main farmers co-ops later today to discuss the ongoing fodder crisis.

    Yesterday evening, the Agriculture Minister Michael Creed announced a national review of fodder supplies.

    It follows months of wet weather, that have left farmers in many areas low on animal feed.

    Minister Creed says his department may consider importing fodder if required.

    The Minister said officials from his Department met with Teagasc and the main co-ops last week, and will meet again today following a difficult weekend.

    He said significant rainfall over the weekend in many areas of the country has created additional challenges for Irish farmers dealing with what has already been a difficult spring.

    A register is also being established by Teagasc for farmers who may have additional fodder, with the agency saying they want to mobilise any fodder reserves to help farmers in need.

  • Farmers are facing a fodder crisis and a financial crisis around the country.

    That's the warning from the IFA as it welcomes a Government scheme to encourage farmers to plant fast growing fodder as a catch crop - following the damage caused by the drought.

    IFA President Joe Healy says this year's weather extremes of snow and heat have left farmers in a dire position with crops and livestock.

     

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    Fianna Fail says the fodder crisis is putting a huge strain on farmers' mental health.

    The party is bringing a motion before the Dáil and Seanad today calling on the government to step up its response to the shortage and set up a hardship fund, as well as introducing a meal voucher scheme.

    They say urgent action is needed to reduce the financial pressure on farmers.

    Fianna Fail's Agriculture Spokesperson, Charlie McConalogue, says the government's response to date hasn't been good enough:

  • The Oireachtas Agriculture Committee will meet this afternoon to discuss the fodder crisis.

    The Agriculture Minister Michael Creed  has been invited to the meeting to explain what steps his department are taking to tackle the fodder shortage, which is affecting farmers along the Western seaboard and in other areas of the country.

    Committee Chair Fine Gael Deputy Pat Deering says they want a detailed update today on the crisis:

  • The Agriculture Minister needs to put an aid package in place for farmers worst affected by the ongoing fodder crisis – that’s according to the Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association.

    With further wet weather this week, and fodder supplies being depleted, the situation is very serious for many farmers across the West and Northwest region, but the INHFA says the Minister’s fodder transport subsidy has not worked, as very few farmers have applied, and an aid package is now needed.

    The Mayo chairman of the Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association Gerry Loftus says they’re now writing to TDs across the country to appeal to Minister Michael Creed for financial assistance….

  • Standing orders were suspended at this afternoon’s monthly meeting of Mayo County Council to discuss the fodder crisis.

    Farmers across the county and across Connacht are facing major fodder shortages following the poor Winter weather, followed by a very wet Spring.

    Minister of State John Paul Phelan addressed today’s meeting at Aras an Condae in Castlebar, where he admitted to councillors that the Department of Agriculture was slow in responding to the fodder crisis.

  • Two-and-a-half-thousand tonnes of animal fodder have started to arrive in Ireland for livestock hit by the bad weather.

    Extra supplies have been drafted in from the UK, after farmers sought help to feed their herds.

    Dairygold which has arranged for the shipment will sell it at cost price to co-op members.

    In this region, Aurivo Co-Op says it has access to adequate fodder supplies at present, and farmers who need additional fodder should contact their local co-op store, so Aurivo knows what stocks it will need to source.

    Chief Executive of Aurivo Aaron Forde was among the co-op representatives who spoke with Minister Michael Creed at yesterday’s meeting in relation to the fodder crisis.

    Mayo-based FG Senator Michelle Mulherin says Aurivo are also holding regional meetings with farmers at present to ascertain the demand for additional fodder.

    Senator Mulherin, who’s a member of the Joint Oireachtas Agriculture Committee, has requested that the committee hold an emergency meeting next week to discuss the issues surrounding the fodder crisis.

    She’s also requesting that the Agriculture Minister, the main co-ops and Teagasc be invited to address the meeting…..

  • The effect of the severe fodder shortage in Mayo cannot be overstated, as farmers are at their wits end – that’s according to Mayo Fianna Fail TD Lisa Chambers.

    The party last night tabled motions in the Dáil and Seanad on the fodder crisis and its impact on animal welfare, farm sustainability and the wellbeing of farmers.

    Fianna Fail is calling for a number of measures to alleviate pressure on farmers, including a hardship fund,  low interest loans to tide farmers over,  the speeding up of farm payments and a temporarily halt to all cross compliance inspections on farms.

    However, Deputy Chambers says the most immediate need is for a meal voucher scheme to be introduced….

  • The Department of Agriculture was " slow in responding to the present fodder crisis". This was admitted yesterday by the Minister of State at the Dept of Housing Planning and Local Government, John Paul Phelan when he attended yesterday’s monthly meeting of Mayo county council.

    Minister Phelan was in Aras an Chontae to address the councillors on developments within his own department, issues related to housing , planning and local government, but was in his own words somewhat “ambushed” by councillors who took the opportunity to discuss the national fodder crisis with him.

    At the start of yesterday’s meeting Fianna Fail councillor Damien Ryan called for standing orders to be suspended to allow debate on the fodder crisis and his proposal was supported by the councillors present.

    Close to 30 councillors then gave their view of the crisis and possible solutions to it, to and asked Minister Phelan to have their views conveyed to Minister Creed.

    In response to the councillors’ contributions, Minister Phelan, a Kilkenny native, agreed that the impact of the fodder shortage was nationwide and severe and said the weather is dictating the problem and how long it will now remain a problem. He did admit however, that in his opinion, the dept of Agriculture was slow in responding to the crisis.

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    Farmers across the country are being hit by a second fodder crisis this year after the drought.

    It comes as new figures from DoneDeal.ie show bale prices have rocketed by almost 20 per cent year on year as the shortage intensifies.

    Silage has seen the most dramatic rise, with prices increasing by 31 per cent.

    Irish Farmers Association President, Galway based Joe Healy  says  the costs are going up due to demand and the severe fodder crisis.

     

     

     

  • A Sligo Fianna Fail TD has called for the sacking of Minister Michael Creed for what he says has been the Government’s total ineptitude in handling the fodder crisis.

    Deputy Marc McSharry says he first identified and raised the inevitability of a fodder crisis and the need for planning and preparation on October 11th of last year.

    He says his calls were ignored but the crisis has been developing as far back as August 2017, with many herds being forced indoors much earlier than usual due to the inclement weather.

    Deputy MacSharry says Minister Creed’s initiatives so far have included the introduction of a totally unworkable fodder transport scheme and an even less workable fodder provision scheme, which received only a dozen applications.