Minister should pay outstanding GLAS to help farmers buy fodder - Martin Kenny TD
Speaking today following the emergency meeting of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine on the fodder crisis, Sinn Féin spokesperson, Martin Kenny TD said that the minister is still not prepared to do anything directly to help farmers.
Deputy Kenny said:
“The Minister is prepared to talk to the banks about credit for farmers, he is prepared to pay for the transport of silage from one end of the country to the other, but he is not ready to issue vouchers for feed concentrate to alleviate the real animal welfare issue that exists.
“I called on the Minister today, for a start, to pay the 15% outstanding GLAS payment, despite not having finished inspections. He should pay farmers this money now and deal with the EU afterwards.
"His prime responsibilities are to Irish farmers who are in crisis and not to the EU rules. Teagasc, from the outset of this crisis, had proposed the use of meal concentrates.
"Had the Minister spent the same money on vouchers for meal as he spent on a transport subsidy, we would not be in the situation we are in now.
“Transporting fodder from one end of the country to the other, only resulted in spreading the shortage around."