The biggest concern for Irish farmers - for the second year in a row - is rising input costs such as feed, fertiliser, and energy.
That is according to an annual Farm Report conducted by ifac, Ireland’s farming, food and agribusiness specialist professional services firm.
Ifac’s fifth annual Irish farm survey containing the views of 1,160 Irish farmers, and contained within the report, reveals the issues that are front of mind for Irish farmers today. The survey took place between October and December 2022.
Three quarters (75%) of Irish farmers say their biggest worry for 2023 is input prices (up 10% on last year). While over half (54%) are concerned about their electricity and gas costs at home,
More than half (52%) of farmers surveyed say the biggest barrier to adopting renewable projects is the level of financial investment required coupled with the low returns. Yet, to help tackle rising energy costs and for long-term sustainability, 41% say they would lease land to a solar or wind project if the opportunity arose, signalling an appetite for farmer-developed projects (wind energy or solar panels on farms) when targeted schemes come into effect.
Commenting on the report, Chief Executive of ifac, John Donoghue said, "There is no denying that farmers have experienced serious cost increases in 2022 so, it is encouraging to see that more than half of our survey respondents are optimistic for the coming year, with three-quarters planning to still be farming in five years' time."