CSO Figures Show Tillage Sector Battling to Survive

IFA President Francie Gorman said today’s CSO figures showing the main cereal crops fell by 20% last year is further evidence of the pressures on the sector.

In 2023, 2m tonnes of wheat, barley and oats were produced, down 500,000 tonnes on 2022. Potato production was down 12%.

CSO Figures Show Tillage Sector Battling to Survive

“It further highlights the urgency of the Tillage Survival Scheme put forward by IFA. We raised this again with Taoiseach Simon Harris on a tillage farm in Kilkenny last week. No time can be lost in putting together a support package that provides some hope for the sector,” he said.

“Tillage farmers have faced a perfect storm since summer 2023, with falling grain prices; input costs remaining high; loss of rented land; and heavy rainfall in the period since,” Francie Gorman said.

“There is no question that our tillage sector is fighting for its very future. The Government says it wants to have more tillage production and this will only happen if they step up and support growers. What was announced recently by the Minister for Agriculture is inadequate,” he said.

IFA National Grain Chairman Kieran McEvoy said in light of the difficulties being experienced in the tillage sector, IFA has proposed in its Tillage Survival Scheme a €250/ha, five-year payment for tillage farmers. It is essential this funding is secured in 2024 to prevent a decimation of the national tillage area.

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