825 farmers apply for first tranche of GLAS funding in county
A total of 825 farmers in Wexford have applied for the first tranche of GLAS funding, Ireland's new agri-environment scheme.
Many chose a range of environment-friendly initiatives ranging from water courses to birds, bees and bats.
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney he expects that most of these will draw close to the maximum annual payment of €5,000.
'By any standards, GLAS is already a huge success and it is clearly going to play a key role in the protection of our rural environment,' said the minister.
The GLAS scheme, co-funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, is set to play a vital role in the protection of Wexford's rural environment.
'It is significant that well over half of the commonages in the country, just under 2,700 have applied for GLAS. This is a major step towards the establishment of greatly enhanced management regimes for these upland areas,' said Minister Paul Kehoe.
The most popular element of the Scheme related to Low Input Permanent Pasture which was selected by 20,000 farmers.
Protection of watercourses was another popular choice by 10,000 farmers, while large numbers also chose a variety of actions designed to protect birds, bees and bats.
'Protecting the agri-environment and supporting strong, sustainable farming is key to the continued growth of the agri-food sector. GLAS will make a big difference in achieving this goal and it will provide support for farmers in doing so.'