This measure will be funded by a combination of EU exceptional aid and Exchequer support, provided in light of the difficult circumstances that Irish beef farmers have been facing as a result of market volatility and uncertainty arising out of Brexit.
The Minister acknowledged, “I am keenly aware that the past few months have been very difficult for beef farmers. There has been a prolonged and exceptional period of depressed prices since last autumn, with the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the outcome of Brexit, among other factors, contributing to this market disturbance.”
“The availability of this EU and Exchequer support, together with the Beef Environmental Efficiency Pilot (BEEP) introduced earlier this year, provides an injection of up to €120m in aid for the beef sector in 2019.”
BEAM will provide financial aid to Irish beef farmers and is targeted towards those farmers most affected. BEAM is also designed to meet the requirements set out by the Commission, including granting support to farmers engaging in actions, which enhance their long-term resilience and sustainability.
BEAM is a demand-led, voluntary scheme. Farmers who meet the initial eligibility criteria will then have to commit to meeting the following conditions in order to qualify for aid. Each participant must:
- be a member of a Bord Bia Quality Assurance Scheme or a DAFM environmental scheme; and
- reduce the production of bovine livestock manure nitrogen (total figure) per herd by 5% for a target period (1 July 2020 - 30 June 2021) compared to a reference period (1 July 2018 – 30 June 2019).