The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue T.D., today advised farmers and advisors that the facility to select the later 12-month reduction period for Beef Emergency Aid Measure (BEAM) is now available on agfood.ie.
Farmers will have from today 19th March until Monday 21st June 2021 to select the later 12-month reduction period of 1st January 2021 to 31st December 2021 if they so wish.
Farmers and advisors are reminded that the reference period of 1st July 2018 to 30th June 2019 remains the same and that participants must still deliver the 5% reduction amount. The new reduction period will only apply to those farmers who opt to apply for the change. Those farmers currently on track to meet the 5% nitrogen reduction targets can use the original reference period ending 30 June.
The Minister stated, “Changing the BEAM reference period a key priority of mine when I came to office as I knew that a lot of farmers were in danger of missing the initial reference period. I succeeded in getting consent from the European Commission to facilitate the changing of the reference period and I am now urging farmers to use this maximum flexibility to do all they can to meet the requirements of the scheme. Farmers need to take a proactive approach to avoid facing penalties.
“My Department will continue to engage with farmers to inform them of their most up-to-date figures in order to inform them of their situation.”
Minister McConalogue reminded farmers that the Department’s BEAM Bovine Nitrates Calculator is available on agfood.ie and is being updated monthly. He encouraged participants to utilise the range of tools available including the monthly letter to each BEAM participant outlining their individual progress to date on achieving the 5% reduction and to engage with their advisor.
The Minister also informed participants that should they select the option of the later reduction period (1st January 2021 – 31st December 2021), they will still continue to receive monthly letters relating to their progress on achieving the 5% reduction within the existing reduction period, 1st July 2021 – 31st December 2021. If after the 30th June 2021, the Department identifies that participants who selected the later reduction period, had met the 5% reduction during the existing reduction period (1st July 2020 – 30th June 2021), the Department will advise participants and allow them to withdraw from the later reduction period.