The long-awaited ‘forgotten farmer scheme’ is to be funded in the next Budget, Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue has confirmed.

Speaking in the Dáil, Minister McConalogue said it is his intention to have such a scheme funded through Budget 2025.

“There has been significant engagement in the past two to three years with farm organisations on the definition of who would qualify and what they missed out on.

“The objective then is to work with the Department of Public Expenditure, National Development Plan Delivery and Reform to secure a package that would reflect the fact that those farmers missed out during that period.

“A lot of the preparatory work has been completed. My next step is to engage in terms of securing the funding as well to step that out. We are now at a stage where I feel we are in a position, logistically, to be able to overlay it,” he said.

Department of Agriculture analysis shows that approximately 3,500 farmers would meet the basic definition of a forgotten farmer.


The minister was responding to a question from Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on agriculture Claire Kerrane, who asked when the scheme will be delivered and what it might look like.

“The frustration is that, every time it is raised, we are told it is coming in the next few months.

“We constantly hear about the scoping out of the IT systems and all of that. I understand the new CAP was obviously the priority and that it has taken a lot of time and work.

“I commend the Department on all of that.

“However, given that this issue has been going on for more than a decade, I do not believe that is an excuse and that we still do not have information on what the proposed scheme will look like,” she added.

Forgotten farmer

Forgotten farmer is a term used to describe young farmers who lost out following the removal of young farmer supports (installation aid) due to cuts in public expenditure during the last recession.

They were then unable to qualify for young farmer supports introduced under CAP 2015, because, in many cases, they had been farming for five years or more.

There have been many calls in recent years for a scheme to compensate these farmers.