Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Ceisteanna (495)

Michael Fitzmaurice

Ceist:

495. Deputy Michael Fitzmaurice asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if farmers can continue to receive payments under the beef data and genomics programme, BDGP, scheme if they have switched from suckler farming to dairying in recent years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5296/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Agriculture)

In submitting an application to participate in the BDGP, applicants gave an undertaking to adhere to the terms and conditions that govern the Programme. Payments under BDGP are based on the full completion of specified actions over the course of six years which were designed to improve the genetic merit of a beef farmer’s herd. Section 13 of the scheme’s Terms and Conditions refers to applicants who may withdraw from the scheme prematurely and it states that:

‘Where a contract is terminated by an applicant all monies paid under the Programme shall be repaid to the Department except in cases of Force Majeure.’

BDGP participants who switch from a suckler to a dairy enterprise are in clear breach of the scheme’s Terms and Conditions and as such will no longer be eligible for payment under the Programme and will have to repay all the monies they received under the BDGP.