Written Answers. - Fodder Relief Scheme.

Enda Kenny

Question:

393 Mr. Kenny asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food if areas excluded from the previous fodder aid package scheme introduced in 1998 were excluded on the basis of reports and analysis carried out by Teagasc; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1722/99]

The 1998 fodder scheme was directed at district electoral divisions – DEDs – in the worst affected areas identified in the Teagasc survey completed in September. The Teagasc survey provided the main basis for selecting the qualifying DEDs.

Enda Kenny

Question:

394 Mr. Kenny asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food if district electoral divisions excluded from the fodder aid package introduced in 1998 will be eligible to be included in any amended or reintroduced fodder aid package scheme for 1999; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1723/99]

Arising from discussions at the Government meeting earlier this week my Department and the Department of Finance have already entered into discussions to devise a suitably targeted scheme to assist farmers who are experiencing severe difficulty due to scarcity of fodder. The matter is being pursued with urgency.

Enda Kenny

Question:

395 Mr. Kenny asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food the reason for excluding a number of district electoral divisions in the Galway and Mayo area from the fodder aid package introduced in 1998; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1724/99]

The 1998 fodder scheme was targeted at the worst affected district electoral divisions in certain counties and, while some farmers in other areas were also affected by fodder difficulties, the aim of the scheme was to provide assistance to those who suffered the most hardship. In addition it should be noted that all sheep farmers with mountain grazings as per the sheep headage scheme benefited under the scheme.