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Most farmers are still struggling to make a living - Ferris

26 May, 2015 - by Martin Ferris TD

Speaking after the publication of the Teagasc National Farm Survey, Sinn Féin’s agriculture spokesman, Martin Ferris TD, said that farm incomes remain too low despite a six percent rise last year.

Deputy Ferris said:

“An average farm income of just under €27,000 shows just how hard life is for some farmers still.

“While dairy farmers’ income average is in the higher bracket, it is shocking to see that less than 20% of farmers earned over €50,000 and a staggering 40% earned less than €10,000.

“Some of these would be part-time farmers but still, it shows how difficult it is to make a living at farming these days without supplementing farm income with off-farm activities.

“What this report shows is that the big, rich farmer is not as common as the small farmer who is struggling, despite farming being the mainstay of our economy and our social fabric.

“This all points to the need to ensure stronger prices for farm produce to allow farmers to make a decent living. The government must defend farmers and not allow circumstances, like those suffered by beef farmers last year, to happen at the whim of the processors.”

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