BEEP pilot will target the weaning efficiency of suckler cows and calves –O’Shea
Jan 31, 2019
The new Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot will receive €20 million funding in 2019, North Cork Fine Gael Councillor John Paul O’Shea has said.
Cllr. O’Shea is encouraging all eligible Cork farmers to apply to funding.
The scheme will target the weaning efficiency of suckler cows and calves – measuring the live weight of the calf at weaning as a percentage of the cow’s live weight.
Cllr. O’Shea said: “Prior to the Budget I made continued representations to the Department on behalf of Cork farmers and I am very pleased that Fine Gael responded, showing its understanding that this sector is under terrible financial pressure.
“Participating farmers will also get detailed feedback on the performance of individual animals and this will allow them to identify the most productive cows in their herd.
“Building on the success of the Beef Data and Genomics Programme, the data collected will also be a valuable addition to Ireland’s already impressive cattle breeding database.
“Breeding improvement through the Economic Breeding Index is identifying the most efficient animals for grass-based production system”.
“I am very conscious that 2018 was a very difficult year for beef farmers in Cork, in terms of weather, fodder issues and market volatility.
“This is the sector most exposed to Brexit, given its reliance on the UK market. The BEEP is designed to provide an injection of investment at a critical time for farmers navigating the challenges ahead, while delivering in real terms on our climate objectives.
“I would encourage all beef suckler herd owners in Cork to apply for the scheme, applications will be accepted by the Department of agriculture between 4 and 22 February 2019.
“The application forms are available on https://www.agriculture.gov.ie/beep/. The Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot was announced in Budget 2019 as part of the €78m Brexit package for the agri-food industry.
As well as clear environmental and climate benefits, the BEEP will provide farm gate investment at a time of market volatility and uncertainty relating to Brexit.”
Further information on BEEP
Who can apply for the pilot?
This is a pilot Exchequer funded scheme that is aimed at further improving performance and efficiency in the beef suckler herd.
Applications will be accepted between 4 and 22 February 2019.
How will it work?
Farmers will apply to the Department to participate. They will then weigh their animals as outlined in the terms and conditions (insert link to T&C document) by either using the scales rental model (subject to rental T&Cs) which has been put in place or by using privately owned scales which have been registered with ICBF for the purposes of the pilot.
The weight records will be submitted to ICBF. The submission of data will be confirmed to DAFM by ICBF and payments will be made to approved applicants in December 2019. It is important to note that as this is a one year, exchequer funded pilot, all payments must be made in 2019 and therefore the timelines outlined in the terms and conditions must be strictly adhered to.
How much will be paid?
The €20 million funding available will allow for payment equivalent of up to a maximum of €40 per calf, based on costs incurred and income foregone. If the scheme is oversubscribed a linear cut may be applied.
It is a pilot scheme for 2019 only, Exchequer funded and operated under State Aid de minimis provisions.