€100m Beef Funding

Discussion in 'Stock Talk' started by mixed fleet, May 29, 2019.

  1. mixed fleet

    mixed fleet Well-Known Member

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    If they pay out the 100m to farmers that slaughtered cattle in the winter past.
    How do you differentiate between paying to farmers or factory feedlot, or factory controlled feedlot.
     
  2. Ozzy Scott

    Ozzy Scott Well-Known Member

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    seems impossible to do or even define, and probably illegal given competition and state aid laws. would be wide open to challenge in the courts I would think.
     
  3. ithastopay

    ithastopay Well-Known Member

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    Would be an idea to start a thread to discuss where this €100m should go.
    Personally I think it’s of little use to farmers in the long term, it’s only going to cause more division between farmers “divide and conquer”
    What’s the definition of a feedlot?
    What’s the definition of a factory controlled feedlot?
    What’s definition of a farmer?

    It’s proving very difficult to get consensus on the definition of a “genuine farmer” or “active farmer”
    In the cap negotiations.

    It’s going to be a mess, it was well timed with the local and European elections, as I understand it the EU is putting up €50m with the Irish government expected to match this figure.

    As I see it the low prices can be traced back to the drought problems of last summer, the price of store cattle fell, (we were in a good enough position at the time, we had grass and we bought most of our cattle then, we’re not big finishers) this contributed to lower beef prices during the winter, keeping beef prices low, this allows the Irish beef to stay competitive in the UK, in doing so it’s makes the market look less attractive for South American processors and British buyers are more likely to stick with Irish beef post brexit.
    That’s my thinking, others may disagree.

    Throwing more and more money at a tight margin business is not the answer, most farmers don’t know their costs, nor could they tell you what the average price they got for the cattle they sold over the previous year or a number of years.

    If it’s not paying to keep a suckler cow, give it up, If it’s not paying to buy a suck calf, a weanling or a store animal and bring them onto beef, give it up, the sfp can be collected, as can glas, a bit of land can be planted, if land is of good quality fodder could be grown for the expannding dairy herd.
    Or consider the nuclear option lease the farm and get the rent tax free.
    Farmers are and have been their own worst enemy for many years imo.

    We in all areas of beef farming need to have a good look around inside our own gate.
    Conversation to dairy may suit some but it’s not for all.
    @Seedsower made a brave move, getting into farm tourism, its great to see a farmer make a change and try out something different, instead of doing the same thing again and again and expecting a better result, it’s not for everyone and it’s vey dependent on location, I hope it goes well for them and hopefully someone else on here will learn from his experiences and go off and try something different too.

    Anyway back to the €100m,
    It will be very hard to have a scheme to suit all.

    I’d suggest a payment per head on calves born to a suckler cow in 2018.
    No cap on the number of cows, any full time suckler farmer deserves it.

    A payment per head on beef cattle slaughtered, I’d suggest from September 2018 to now the end of May 2019.
    Put a cap on the number of eligible animals per herd, the number would need to be in the mid hundreds (300 to 500) this should facilitate most genuine finishing farmers, while preventing a factory owned feedlot getting money on 1000’s of cattle.
    All eligible cattle should have to be in the herd for a minimum number of days, perhaps 70 days as with the quality assurance might be a suitable figure.

    Rough figures.
    900000 cows at €50/head €45m

    30 weeks cumulative slaughter numbers, would be excess of 1m cattle, allowing for the capping and some animals not qualifying as a result of not being in the herd for long enough the figure would be lower.
    If it were to be 900000 eligible cattle the figure would be €50/head €45m.
    A suckler farmer who brought his cattle to slaughter would be eligible for both.

    My figures are rough enough, it’s gives an idea of what could be done with €100m.
    This won’t please everyone, however it gets the money to those who need it most imo and who earned it, the farmer who goes out and buys a few expensive cattle in the spring to eat the grass and satisfy stocking rate rules, only to return and sell them again when the grass stops growing, is the least deserving of any compensation in my view.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2019
  4. Ozzy Scott

    Ozzy Scott Well-Known Member

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    IMV I would prefer if us farmers got none of the 100m, it will be the cheapest we as farmers will ever have been bought off by the government. They are expected to put in 50m, after VAT, Tax and PRSI that will be closer to 20m out of their pockets, and then they can say 'sure we looked after you beef guys' for the next few years.

    Whatever a guy that finishes a fair few cattle will get out of it, just say for argument sake 10k, its probably a drop in the ocean of what they have lost. Having killed cattle most weeks over last 6 months, I would say, up to xmas was grand, but after xmas when shed cattle start costing serious amount of money, these are the guys who have lost the biggest %. for the last 12 months beef price has hovered around €3.80, this is breakeven for grass cattle, but its €0.50 shy for indoor winter finished cattle if not more. If I was to get say €80 an animal it will give others and myself the confidence to repeat all the same mistakes again next year. this is what the government want.

    I would like to see (this will never happen) is the 100m to be made available to independent research for a system that suits beef production. Not the current model that is been sold to us by teagasc, which is a dairy grassland model shoehorned into a beef system. They are 2 totally different farming systems. A bullock at max puts on around €2 a day, a cow can be doing €12 a day, so or cost models have to be very different. funding for groups of farmers who have new fresh ideas. be that on the production, marketing, ecology side. 100m would go some distance for education and training course from the best guys around the world to see if we can develop a system that works from all angles. aslong we need cash and expertise from people who know what they are talking about to defend us from the current onslaught the meat farming is leading to the end of civilization. Shouting and roaring in crowded rooms will achieve nothing. Sorry, these are just all brain farts from me
     
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  5. nashmach

    nashmach Well-Known Member

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    Moved across lads. I might have some more tidying to do late on this.
     
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  6. Mf 7715

    Mf 7715 Well-Known Member

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    When the EU agreed to give the Irish government the 50 million how were they told it would be divided up? It's a lot of money they must have some idea how it is to be spent. If so, we probably have no say. But @ithastopay has some good ideas which seem fair to every sector of the beef industry. As mentioned the man who buys cattle in the spring to sell in the backend doesn't deserve a lot.
     
  7. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    I think this is a great point. Too many people using the bfp and off farm income to prop up beef production. About ten years ago I had about fifteen sucklers as well as the dairy cows. I found they weren't paying so I took them to the factory and got into more dairy cows.

    If people didn't produce beef at a loss then factories would have to pay more as it simply wouldn't be there.

    Back to the 100 million, I think we all know that it's going to be a mess.
     
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  8. towbar

    towbar Well-Known Member

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    Not qualified to comment but I’m going to. :smile: I certainly don’t begrudge payments to beef farmers but I think the payouts will just allow the problem of poor returns to be continued for another year. As @Ozzy Scott says spend it on training but also on diversification programs ideally not encouraging transition to dairying or cereals but real diversification like god forbid vegetables, fruit, flowers, tourism etc.
     
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  9. Barrowsider

    Barrowsider Well-Known Member

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    This €100m is going to cause a lot of trouble. I'm probably not going to help matters either but here's my thoughts.

    The group I would like to see excluded are the dairy cows that were dumped out of the milking parlour and up the ramp to the factory without fattening. These stock did a lot of harm to the beef trade last backend. Perhaps anything under a fat score of 2= excluded??

    I'll also ask the question how much less did suckler farmers receive for their 2018 born calves compared to 2017? I thought the trade wasn't that bad last Autumn.
     
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  10. WestCorkBoy

    WestCorkBoy Well-Known Member

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    I don't buy weanlings anymore but ive heard a few say the same re weanling prices last autumn incl a couple of suckler farmers and the increased weather related costs last year are what really put the squeeze on them.. I dont know that is very anecdotal but what do ye lads who sold weanlings last autumn think. How did you fair out in €/kg year to year?
     
  11. stevieg

    stevieg Well-Known Member

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    A few specialised young bull finishers around here were down €400 to €500 per head this spring compared to last year. I know suckler men are not making a fortune but I don’t think their weanlings were back €400 last autumn.
     
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  12. nashmach

    nashmach Well-Known Member

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    I just hope that this €100m won't be eaten up with fees for applications to Teagasc and other advisors. We've seen in the past what happened with the KT groups and even now with the TAMS applications.

    This like the broadband money is solely an election gimmick. There's no way that the two Departments here let alone Europe would hand out that money Willy nilly without a cost benefit analysis being done.

    As to how it should be divided. Ithastopays method is the fairest I've seen so far but then you exclude those who sell finished cattle in the mart but then how do you define finished and then you are back to square one..

    One thing is definitely not agreeable though is a flat rate per farmer but as the EU in general is against production measures I wouldn't be surprised to see this happening.

    I can see this getting nasty yet and will lead to a few turbulent years in dividing farmers with the CAP negotiations coming up. Divide and conquer comes to mind.

    Credit where credit is due IFA pushed this very Hard for a few months and it is probably more than they expected from it.
     
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  13. horsebox44

    horsebox44 Well-Known Member

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    Agree 100 % there @Barrowsider ..... It was the big 300/400 dairy man that done untold harm to the average finisher who would have stock coming off grass in the autumn every year who was completely pushed a side last year.
    Plenty of reports of your typical dairy man booking in 20 culls straight out the parlour and instead delivering 30:curse: - No mention of price either... just delighted to off load some of the herd and reduce feed/ grass demand.

    It's very hard for the average beef man to have any kind of bargaining power when our dairy colleagues are just using their local factory as a dumping ground for unwanted stock.
     
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  14. mixed fleet

    mixed fleet Well-Known Member

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    Is the 100m not meant to be compensation for the effects of brexit .
    As others have said it's probably only a sticking plaster solution, prolonging the agony. To be honest I'm surprised that any money was forthcoming .
    With all due respect,very few have the option of dropping the sucklers and switching to dairy.
    A lot of sucker farmers are on poorer soils with fragmented farms. There's 30k suckler cow in Co Longford, 3 times the number of dairy cows.
    The average suckler herd in the county has 14 cows.
    I don't think that producing less is a solution either .
    Is it not fair to say that the bad prices all winter were caused by increased supply (including a lot of dairy cows.) Combined with sluggish demand.
    The Irish beef price was similar to the average European beef price.

    The BFP is meant to some way compensate for low market prices , but also to reward farmers for delivering "public Goods"
    Maintaining a level of economic activity in rural areas.
    Preservation of the landscape.
    One thing for sure any money that comes will be spent locally giving a boost to the rural economy.
     
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  15. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with what your saying and I'm not saying for everyone to get into dairying. I think the best years of dairying could be over and if everyone gets into it then price will only go one way. But that's another thread.

    I've not saying people shouldnt be getting bfp I'm saying if your using it to support a beef enterprise maybe you should consider something else, because you will get the payment if you keep less stock.

    You can milk cows off poorer soils too you know, you'll just need to be realistic about stocking rate.
     
  16. mixed fleet

    mixed fleet Well-Known Member

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    Believe me, I have nothing to learn when it comes to "milking cows off poorer soils ":rolleyes2::smile::rolleyes2::smile:
     
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  17. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    Same here. We've turf in one end and rocks in the other. :Thumbp2:
     
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  18. nashmach

    nashmach Well-Known Member

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    Is this setting a precedent then? What's stopping sheep farmers or dairy men demanding a similar level of support when prices tank?
     
  19. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    Wasn't there a payment a couple of years back to dairy farmers 2016 or so
     
  20. nashmach

    nashmach Well-Known Member

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    There was, about 1300 flat per farmer. I don't think that's the solution for this money though.
     
  21. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    It's strange that a plan wasn't in place to distribute the money before it was looked for.
     
  22. marco

    marco Well-Known Member

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    How many sucklers and offspring are in the country? Divide the 100 mill equally, pick a date. And divide by livestock units. Only way you are going to get something to everyone. Otherwise it's to discriminate against one group or other.
     
  23. nashmach

    nashmach Well-Known Member

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    Farmers Journal are reporting that the announcement is to blame for an increase in supply of finished cattle.

    It's also reporting Big Phil says incentives need to be brought in to decrease suckler numbers....
     
  24. ShaneB140

    ShaneB140 Well-Known Member

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    You’d hope the factory’s/feedlots wouldn’t get any of it, they’ve already got and made the money from the cattle by not paying the value of the stock..
     
  25. bruceythom

    bruceythom Well-Known Member

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    I'm going to get Lynched for this but here's my suggestion; 2 cheques €50m from Irish exchequer and €50m from Europe both made out to Larry Goodman. This would be the most economical way of handing over money that is all going to end up in his pocket either way. An unpopular statement is that a serious cut back is needed on suckler cow numbers that have more than doubled over the last 30 years, we are over supplying beef and it's killing us, encouraging suckler cows is definitely not going to do anyone with a beef animal any favours. Put 100% of the €100m in to a top up on factory cull price for beef cows, everyone would benefit from that then long term.
    Its acceptable to say there are too many dairy cows in the country, but dare anyone say the same about suckler cows. National dairy herd has shrunk over the last 35yrs
     
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