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Minister Wallace welcomes clarification on Consolidation and SPS amendments

Minister of State with responsibility for Forestry, Mary Wallace T.D., has confirmed that the deadline for consolidation applications under the Single Payment Scheme (SPS) in respect of farmers who wish to plant forestry in 2007 has been extended to 29 June. Minister Wallace also clarified that under SPS, it is permissible in most circumstances to change the declared use from forage to forestry at any stage prior to payment, without penalty.

Minister Wallace said "Farmers can rest assured that if they wish to plant their land they may plant up to 50% of their holding without impact on their SPS payment."

Farmers, who wish to plant forestry and consolidate their entitlements in 2007, should apply to the Consolidation Section of the Department before 29 June. If a farmer has declared land as forage and wishes to plant forestry, he/she may do so without penalty provided the SPS payment has not been paid and he/she has not been notified beforehand of any intended on-farm inspection or of the results of checks on their 2007 SPS application.

13 June, 2007

Date Released: 13 June 2007