New measures to support horticulture sector agreed

Dublin Fingal TD and Fine Gael Climate Action Spokesperson, Alan Farrell, has said the new measures agreed by Cabinet will help support a vital sector in our economy.

Deputy Farrell said, “The horticulture sector is of huge importance to Ireland and particularly in our own area of Fingal. The sector provides jobs and products that help keep our country running every day of the year.”

“The sector has been significantly impacted by challenges presented by rising costs and the ability of retail to bounce back in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic and the consequences it brought with it for businesses up and down the country.”

Deputy Farrell continued, “I am therefore pleased that Government have listened to the concerns of the sector and people on the coalface of the issue, and this week Cabinet agreed to introduce new funding for the sector.”

“A support package of €2.8 million will be provided to help the sector manage rising costs and will specifically benefit businesses involved in the production of mushrooms, tomatoes, apples, field vegetables, cucumbers, peppers and more.”

Deputy Farrell said, “While payment rates are not yet finalised they are guided at the following:

• Glasshouse high-wire (tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers) – €50,000/ha to a maximum of 2ha.

• Field veg including protected salads – €177/hectare (€4,800 estimated average payment)

• Mushrooms – €5.8/tonne (€11,800 estimated average payment)

• Apples – €281/tonne (€4,000 estimated average payment)

Deputy Farrell added, “I believe these measures will assist the sector and all that work in it. We all rely on the horticulture sector every day, whether we realise this or not.”