Joe Brady, current IFA Rural Development chairman, has called on Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed to stick to promises made and increase funding for ANC scheme to €230m in 2018. Following the possibility that a review of said schemes could be postponed,due to take place later this year, Brady said increased funding is vital and necessary in light of this.
Brady stated that “The decision by Minister Creed to support a deferral of the ANC review, due to take place this year for implementation next year, must not deflect from the Programme for Government commitment that the funding for the scheme will increase by €25m in 2018”.
And he suggested that the IFA considers no relationship between such a review and increased funding.
He also added that “There is a commitment to increase funding by €25m in 2018, but the total funding for the ANC scheme should increase to the level it was before cuts, €250m.”
The news comes after a nationwide ANC campaign run by the IFA has been underway in recent months. They are focusing their attentions on restoring funding by up to €50m, increasing payment rates to support farm income and protecting areas.
The message from Brady could not have been clearer. The government must restore funding back to what it was before cuts in 2009 so as to reflect the natural handicap.