Fianna Fáil Senator Eugene Murphy was in bullish mood this week as he defended Government support for both rural Ireland and Irish agriculture, highlighting an 11% increase in funding in this year’s Budget.
“Contrary to what some opposition TDs claim, this Government is very pro-farming and pro-rural Ireland.
“Indeed, Budget 2021 saw an 11% increase in funding for Agriculture, food and fisheries as well as €79 million in new funding for a number of pilot measures in the agri environment area to support farm incomes and incentivise climate and environmental action into the future” he said.
Senator Murphy added his belief that he was a “real voice” for the farming community in Roscommon-Galway and afforded local farmers a “direct line” to his party colleague and Minister for Agriculture, Charlie McConalogue.
He said that €102 million has been provided through schemes such as the Beef Data and Genomics Programme and the BEEP Scheme, €450 million had been put towards GLAS and ANCs, and €80 million through TAMs.
He also highlighted legislation being drafted to establish a food ombudsman in 2021 and that Bord Bia grant-aid had increased by €4 million.
In terms of the environment, the Fianna Fáil Senator said that €23 million had been ring-fenced from the Carbon Tax and an additional €56 million in EU funding would be allocated to a range of new pilot environmental measures.