The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue T.D., has announced today that GLAS balancing payments in respect of 2020 will commence ahead of schedule this week. This means that over €26.6m in balancing payments will be made this week to over 43,400 farmers who are participating in the GLAS Scheme.
Commenting on the payments the Minister said, “I am very pleased to be commencing these GLAS balancing payments ahead of schedule to over 43,400 farmers. This is more farmers than last year receiving the payment at this stage and this €27m will reward those who continue to make environmental improvements on their farms. The payments this week will issue to 90% of GLAS participants and will reach farmer’s bank accounts this week.”
The Minister added, “Today’s payment of over €26.6m brings the total payments made to date in respect of GLAS to €990m. It means that 90% of GLAS participants have now been paid in full in respect of their 2020 GLAS commitments.”
The balancing payment represents the final 15% of the 2020 payment and completes the total payment for GLAS actions undertaken last year. Payments will continue to issue in outstanding cases on a regular basis. The Minister encouraged any farmers with queries in relation to GLAS to direct them by email to GLAS@agriculture.gov.ie
The Minister also commented on the level of uptake by GLAS Tranche 1 and 2 participants of an offer of a one-year extension of their contracts. The extension offered extends the final date of these contracts from 31 December 2020 to 31 December 2021. He noted, in this regard, that “the significant level of uptake of 95% ensures that the environmental dividends being delivered by GLAS Tranche 1 and 2 participants continue during 2021 and that GLAS payments will continue to issue to this cohort of over 33,500 farmers in respect of 2021.”
It is also worth noting that a further 13,000 continue to participate in Tranche 3 of this agri-environment scheme during 2021 in accordance with their original contracts.