Can farmers afford DARD?

Kevin McAuley, Moyle District Council Independent Candidate, has welcomed news that the local farm and food sector continues to grow creating extra income and extra employment.

McAuley said “Clearly we have a farming community supplying quality food to world class processing plants out performing their competitors across the water and in the Republic”

“But one wonders if our farmers can afford the dead weight of DARD and endless red tape, often produced for no good reason other than to keep DARD staff busy.

“We have one DARD civil servant for every full time farmer under pension age yet find farmers are left with poorly prepared Single Farm Payment maps. Mapping errors caused by civil servants, not farmers, will cost tax payers over £100 million and are currently wasting endless hours of farmers’ time when they are extra busy with field work as stock go back to grass.

“When elected I intend to keep the pressure on DARD officials and the new regional minister as their job should be to help farmers do better business. At present they show scant respect for farmers and seem set on styming farm families working hard producing good food and protecting our countryside.”