ACRES – Six Arable Actions Receive Deadline Extension

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) recently issued an extension to six arable actions under the Agri-Climate Rural Environment Scheme (ACRES).

DAFM has sent a circular to ACRES advisors to inform them that the deadline for specific arable based actions has been extended to Saturday, September 30.

Field Margin

The department said as a result of the “prolonged adverse weather conditions”, that “an extension has been granted to the establishment deadline for the following actions”.

These actions are:

  • Catch crops;
  • Environmental management of arable fallow (catch crop element only);
  • Geese and swans – arable (catch crop element only);
  • Grass margins – arable;
  • Protection and maintenance of archaeological monuments – arable;
  • Riparian buffer strips/zones – arable.

This extension applies to 2023 only.

The extension comes after criticism of DAFM from the chair of Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) Rural Development Committee, Michael Biggins, who said that the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue should “revisit” current deadlines in place because of challenging sowing conditions in many parts of the country.

Biggins previously said in August to “push the deadline out for a few weeks to let the ground dry up and give impacted farmers some breathing space”.

Locations of ACRES actions

DAFM also issued advice on the procedure that is to be followed if and where changing location of an action whose location may be rotated.

There are four rotational area-based general actions in ACRES:

  • Brassica fodder stubble;
  • Catch crops;
  • Minimum tillage;
  • Over winter stubble.

ACRES participants may, with the prior permission of the department, change the location of these actions to a parcel(s) other than what was declared for ACRES on their application under the Basis Income Support for Sustainability Scheme (BISS).

This permission will be subject to the following requirements:

  • Advance notification to the department of intention to change the location of the action concerned before the relevant annual establishment deadline;
  • Provision of the new parcel number(s);
  • Confirmation that the area(s) selected as new location for action is at least equal in size to the area approved in the ACRES contract for that action.

(Source – Agriland – Colm Ryan – 14/09/2023)

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