ICMSA want complete review and relaunch of “shambolic” TAMS

The Deputy President of ICMSA, Denis Drennan, has called for a complete review and relaunch of TAMS 3 after describing the present scheme as “shambolic from start to finish”. Mr. Drennan, who also Chairs ICMSA’s Farm & Rural Affairs Committee, noted that previous versions of TAMS had always provided some degree of aid and basis for moving forward, but he said that the present scheme was so broken, illogical and dysfunctional that it was beyond ‘running repairs’ and a complete review and relaunch was probably required. Mr. Drennan said that there were at least six areas in which it was already possible to see major defects that were already having a significantly negative effect on the farmer-applicants, and he listed them.

  • A delayed closing date for Tranche 1.
  • Delayed approvals in Tranche 1 with approvals likely to run into 2024 for the majority of farmers.
  • No closing date for Tranche 2 despite repeated requests.
  • A female farmer will not qualify for the 60% grant if she is a joint herdowner with a male, despite the Minister saying that we need to support women in agriculture. (“Which we need to do”, said Mr Drennan).
  • The Department are requesting farmers to get planning permission for internal farm roadways, a condition that was never in place before and overnight adds thousands to the cost of a project unnecessarily.
  • If a farmer pays for the goods through a joint account with another herdowner, they will not get their grant.

Mr. Drennan said that TAMS had become an exercise in frustration and the intent and potential of the Scheme had been hopelessly undermined by frankly ridiculous rules – and he specifically cited the obligation to get planning permission for an internal road – that actually served to ‘catch out’ or just dissuade the thousands of farmers who are willing to invest in environmental improvements.

“Remember that over 8,000 farmers applied to Trache 1 willing to invest their own money for the betterment of the environment, but the Scheme is being completely choked to the point that farm investments that should have been completed for winter 2023 will be lucky to be completed for winter 2024 and all the time, inflation is impacting, an issue that the Department also refuses to take into account in a meaningful way. ICMSA has been asking for a realistic basis for the Costings for at least five years because they were already ‘out of kilter’, we’ve now had several years of rampaging inflation in the construction industry that has meant that Costings that were already very questionable are now hopelessly disconnected from reality”, said Mr. Drennan.

“At a time of huge focus on the environment, it is absolutely ridiculous that we have a once successful and progressive farm scheme being literally choked out of existence by poor administration, illogical sequencing and just downright silly and superfluous rules. It’s really poor and everyone concerned – certainly the farmers willing to put their own money up – deserved much, much better”, said Mr. Drennan.

Ends          28 November 2023

Denis Drennan, 086-8389401

Deputy President, ICMSA.


Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758

ICMSA Press Office