We must learn from fodder crisis – Galway TD

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Galway East TD Sean Canney has said that he has faith that lessons will be learnt from the fodder crisis and that the Minster for Agriculture Michael Creed will treat this crisis like flooding events and put emergency plans in place.

The Independent TD said in the Dáil this week: “Since race week, as they say in Galway, we have had bad weather.

“The weather and farming go hand in glove. I remember on our small family farm in Tuam we used to listen to Charles Mitchel reading the news at night to find out what the weather would be like the next day to make the hay or whatever.

“That has not changed but what has changed is the unprecedented level of rainfall and the unprecedented adverse weather we are getting right throughout the year. We have to examine how we will deal with that and how we will deal with farming.

“I visited a number of marts in recent weeks to talk to farmers.

“They have worked and co-operated together to help out one another as best they can. They have worked with the representatives of the farming organisations and the co-operatives, where possible, to make sure they help one another.

“We have listened tonight to a lot of what is wrong but we also must acknowledge and give credit to the farmers and their families, and the small family farms, for the way they keep beavering away. We can keep talking about what is wrong but we have to examine how we can put this right, and put it right into the future.

“I acknowledge that I have been in contact with the Department about GLAS payments a number of times in the recent weeks and they have been forthcoming and farmers are getting paid. I understand that at this stage, 98% of the payments have been made. It is not as if no payments have been made but we need to make sure that pinch points are sorted out as they arise.

“We must learn from this fodder crisis – I know the Minister will act on it – in the same way as when we had flooding events and put emergency plans in place.”