29 Jun 2022

Longford Leader Farming: Fairness needed for BEAM farmers in associated herd bind


ICSA beef chairperson, Edmund Graham has challenged Department of Agriculture officials to treat farmers in receipt of a BEAM scheme fairly

ICSA beef chairperson, Edmund Graham, has insisted each farmer who has received a BEAM Scheme associated herd letter must be individually assessed and treated fairly by the Department of Agriculture.

“It is unfair to throw a curveball in at the eleventh hour, making it virtually impossible for farmers to rectify their stocking rates with less than a month to go,” he said.

“1,000 farmers have got letters and it is likely that almost half of them are potentially facing a BEAM penalty. Some of these farmers – who thought they were on target to meet the requirements of the scheme - have now been left in an impossible situation.” he said.”

According to the Department of Agriculture where a BEAM farmer has, during the period concerned, had one or more associated herd numbers linked to their BEAM application herd number on the Department’s corporate customer system (CSS), these herd numbers are deemed to be part of the participant’s holding. As such they must be included in the nitrates figures for the holding and show a combined reduction of 5%.

“If this has been the case, why then have nitrates figures not been supplied all along for associated herds? At least then farmers would have been in possession of the all the relevant information and been able to act accordingly,” said Mr Graham.

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