The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed T.D., today announced the opening of applications for the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) and the Greening Scheme.
The Minister commented “I am delighted to announce that the online application system for applications under the 2017 BPS is now open. In addition, application packs are currently being posted to all applicants. In 2017 I am again looking to build on the recent growth in online applications for the BPS given the range of benefits that online applications provide both for farmers and my Department in terms of the more efficient processing of applications and payments.
The Minister confirmed that the closing date for the BPS in 2017 would be Monday 15 May but urged all farmers and advisors to avail of the opening of the application process now rather than waiting until nearer the closing date.
2016 saw the introduction for the first time of preliminary checks for online applications. These preliminary checks allow online applicants to be advised of certain errors at an early stage and to correct any such issues without penalty.
The Minister added “preliminary checks proved very successful in 2016, and they represent one of the many advantages for farmers in making their BPS applications online. Officials from my Department will be providing a range of supports to farmers over the coming weeks to support them in making applications online as we move towards 100% online application in 2018.”
Assistance is available to all farmers using the online application system via www.agfood.ie and the dedicated Helpdesk at 076 1064424.
The Minister concluded by stating “I would urge as many farmers as possible to avail of the opportunity to apply for the BPS at this early stage, particularly via the online system. It is open for farmers to do this either as individuals or through an agent. Higher levels of online applications will allow my Department to continue to improve on the delivery to farmers of essential payments under schemes such as BPS and the ANC.”