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Paul Healy

Paul Healy

Farmers urge Coveney to address concerns

Over 1,000 farmers attended a meeting, hosted by the Irish Farmers’ Association, in Claremorris on Tuesday, June 2, where the Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney got a very strong message about the real concerns of farmers relating to the Beef Data and Genomics Scheme.

  Bernard Donohue, the chairman of Roscommon IFA Livestock Committee, said that the scale of the turnout highlighted the genuine concerns about numerous aspects of the scheme. He said that there was a responsibility on the Minister to address the concerns expressed by suckler farmers and provide the necessary assurances and flexibilities to ensure the €52 million in funding is paid out annually to farmers.

  Mr Donohue said that farmers remain concerned about the six-year rule and claw-backs, the level of genotyping, the requirement to reach four and five stars and the lack of flexibility in the scheme for farmers who want to progress and develop suckler cow numbers.

  He said that the Minister needed to provide the necessary assurances and flexibilities within the scheme to resolve these issues.

  On the six-year rule and claw-back, the Minister said this would only apply to farmers who decided to switch to another enterprise during the term of the Scheme. He acknowledged that mistakes had been made in the communication that was issued to farmers in the first place, from which much of farmers’ concerns arose.

  He also recognised that a greater level of consultation should have taken place. Minister Coveney said the department was willing to look at individual cases if 2014 didn’t work for any farmer as a reference year and that he would establish a working group, as suggested by the IFA President, to look at all aspects of the scheme and review them on an ongoing basis.

  He said that elements of the scheme were proving unattainable would have to be revisited. He said that the working group would have to iron out any difficulties that farmers were experiencing and make the Scheme workable.

  IFA said that they lobbied Minister Coveney and the Government to deliver the €52 million funding for the sector and were determined that the full benefits would be paid out to suckler farmers by December.

  In a statement released after the meeting, local Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice said: “Now that the closing date for the Beef Geonomics Scheme has passed, I am again highlighting the many problems that farmers faced in connection with this scheme.

  “The figures for those joining the scheme are nowhere near what was anticipated because of the problems involved, and there may be as many as 7,000 farmers less than was hoped. “It is envisaged that many of the farmers who have applied for the scheme will actually pull out because of fears that they have about parts of the scheme and the terms and conditions. “It would be in the interest of the Minister to devise a more workable scheme that would suit farners in the West of Ireland, where 80 per cent of the sucklers are based.”

Recycling your farm plastics

IFFPG, the national farm plastics recycling scheme, is providing over 220 bring-centre locations nationwide this year where farmers can recycle the full range of farm plastics.

  Farmers are advised to bring their silage plastics in loose as usual to the bring-centres. The rate this year for silage plastics is €12 per half tonne with the label code. This represents the most cost-efficient recycling service.

  In County Roscommon, IFFPG will conduct seven Bring-centres spread right across the county through its new approved contractor, Mr. Vincent Kearney.

  These include Taughmaconnell Community Centre on Monday, 15th of June. Nearly 1,000 farmers recycled plastic at these bring-centres and almost 800 tonnes of farm plastic was collected last year.

  A full list of our Bring-centres every year is on our website www.farmplastics.ie or alternatively you can LoCall 1890 300 444.

  In addition to silage plastics, IFFPG in partnership with Farm Plastics Recycling is also collecting other farm waste plastics. These plastics include small fertilizer and feed bags, bulk bag liners, bulk fertilizer and feed bags (liners to be removed), chemical containers (triple rinsed), netting and twine.

  In order to avail of this service, farmers should segregate plastics into the various categories mentioned into used bulk bags. The recycling fee per bag at the bring-centre is €15 per bulk fertilizer-sized bag.

  In 2014 IFFPG collected and recycled over 25,000 tonnes of farm plastics. IFFPG is confident that 2015 will be another very successful year, in terms of service to farmers and recycling rates.

For sale in Strokestown

John Earley, FIPAV of Property Partners Earley, Roscommon is this week offering new to the market a quality three-bedroom semi-detached residence of c. 1,100 sq. ft. for sale at 8, Stone Crescent, Strokestown, Co. Roscommon.

  Price guide: All offers after €60,000 to sell.

  John describes the property as “a very well located property in excellent condition throughout, in the centre of Strokestown and within walking distance of all local amenities.”

  The property benefits from spacious living accommodation throughout with a private mature garden area to side and rear in this select and established town centre development. We now invite immediate viewings and all offers after €60,000 for immediate sale.

  For further details or to arrange a viewing, please contact Property Partners Earley, Roscommon on 090-6626579 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Roscommon’s first ever Children’s Literary Festival is this weekend

Roscommon County Council in association with Roscommon Arts Centre, Roscommon Library Services and Roscommon Arts Office proudly present Roscommon’s first Bookworms Children’s Literary Festival, which takes place on Friday June 12th and Saturday June 13th.

  There are a huge array of events taking place in town over the two days – specifically aimed at young readers and lovers of books.

  Local venues are getting in on the fun by throwing their doors open to welcome Roscommon’s little bookworms in. With everything from storytelling trails, design a book and monster draw workshops, theatrical performances, book clinics, and school storytelling sessions there really is something for everyone.

  Children’s author Gerry Boland will be visiting rural schools on Friday 12th, introducing children to both his own work and sharing the work of other authors. With an emphasis on creativity and fun, participants will have the opportunity to get involved, writing their very own poems and stories.

  Also on Friday German storyteller Simone Schuemmelfeder will host storytelling sessions and workshops in Roscommon Library inviting young audiences to come and listen to tales of magic and wonder. Over the weekend the library will also host a Mystery Book Club which invites children to come in and take out a book – but each book is wrapped! So you won’t know what you’ve got until you get home and unwrap it! The perfect way to discover a new read!

  On Saturday storyteller Danielle Allison’s invites youngsters to come along to her storytelling session and workshop also in the library. Join Danielle as she transports you to places near and far with stories that are funny, serious, wise and interactive…all at once.

  Roscommon Arts Centre also has plenty on offer over the weekend. Branar Theatre Company will perform their show ‘The Way Back Home’, based on the children’s book by Oliver Jeffers.

  This show, without words, combines puppetry and music to realise a beautiful and imaginative story. Monkeyshine Theatre Company are bringing their ‘Magic Bookshop’ to the centre on Saturday.

  Step inside and meet some of the inhabitants of this little shop, hear their stories and maybe even take a little of their magic home with you. An interactive theatre experience where audiences are invited to bring gently used books to swap.

  Children’s Books Ireland’s Book Clinic will also be on hand at the centre on Saturday to give out book prescriptions for new reads to young bookworms. Come along bring a book and sit in the Book Doctors waiting room until the Doctor calls you in!

  There are lots of literary events taking place around the town over the weekend such as Storytelling Sessions in Molloy’s Bakery and The Peppermill Restaurant.

  There are also workshops such as a Monster Draw with artist Anna Spearman in Eight ‘till Late and Gleeson’s Townhouse will host a Design a Book Cover workshop and a Stop Motion Workshop with artist Naomi Draper.

  For the full programme of events taking place check out www.roscommonartscentre.ie or contact Roscommon Arts Centre on 090-6625824 or Roscommon Library on 090-6637270.