FF have launched a 10 point plan.
Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Eamon Scanlon has accused the Fine Gael government of obstructing rural development through its hands-off approach.
Deputy Scanlon was commenting following the launch of Fianna Fáil’s 10 point actionplan to address the fodder and farm income crises.
“The last 18 months have been extremely difficult for farmers across the North West, with a fodder crisis, exacerbated by a long, wet winter, followed by a drought this summer. This is all on the back of highly volatile markets”, said Deputy Scanlon.
“Fine Gael has been in power for seven years, and over that time, we have seen attack after attack on rural Ireland. The closure of post offices, small schools, the shambolic roll out of the National Broadband Plan and a failure to support farm families has left rural Ireland in crisis.
“Fianna Fáil wants to do things differently – and last week we launched a new 10 pointaction plan aimed at tackling the fodder and farm income crises.
“If there is a lack of cash flow in farms, it affects the entire community. Entire communities in the North West are solely dependent on the success, or not, of the farming industry.
“We believe that the Government must immediately bring forward a nationally financed hardship fund to help farmers who have been severely impacted by the fodder crisis, escalating costs, falling cattle prices and extreme weather conditions all year. This would provide funding to support farmers sourcing feed and fodder and deal with mounting input costs.
“While Minster Creed has secured enhanced flexibility from the EU on the GLAS scheme, Irish farmers, who are quite simply living on the breadline, have only received token additional funding when compared to farmers in other countries. We are still waiting for the €25 million low cost Brexit loan scheme for farmers and fishermen, announced in October 2017, to be opened.
“Our proposals are rooted in common sense and a commitment to keeping the lights on in rural Ireland. We want to provide support and certainty to farm families who have been so severely impacted by Fine Gael’s failure to act”, concluded Deputy Scanlon.