Burke announces €50m package for Longford farmers hit by Covid-19 crisis

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Longford / Westmeath TD Peter Burke highly critical of ‘opportunistic and populist’ Fianna Fáil

Fine Gael TD for Longford/Westmeath Deputy Peter Burke.

A €50m support scheme will be made available to beef farmers in Longford who have been financially affected by Covid-19, a Fine Gael TD has said.

Peter Burke said, “My colleague, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed has announced Cabinet approval for an allocation of €50 million for a support scheme for beef finishing farms which have been severely impacted by the economic effects of the Covid-19.

“The Irish beef sector has suffered from ongoing market disturbance related to this pandemic which has had a substantial impact for beef farmers and for the rural economy as a whole.

“Fine Gael has been making every effort to assist people whose incomes have been affected by restrictions brought in to ensure the health and safety of all and by economic developments globally. I hope that the support package announced today will go some way to restoring the livelihoods for farmers in and their families.

“This support for the beef sector is an emergency response to a dramatic economic shock and to mitigate the worst Covid-19 economic impacts on these farm enterprises. 

“Beef farming is a significant economic contributor to the local economy and thus is more important than ever in sustaining our communities as we recover from the economic effects of Covid-19.

“Minister Creed has confirmed to me his department will be engaging with stakeholders regarding the details of the scheme to be developed, which must also submitted to the EU for state aid approval under the Covid-19 Temporary State Aid Framework.

“A meeting of the Beef Taskforce will also be planned for the end of June, to take place by video conference in light of Covid-19 restrictions,” Burke, whose family still farm at Clonmore, Mullingar, said.