Uncertainty on CAP is hitting letting market
THE uncertainty surrounding the establishment of entitlements under the new CAP is bringing the land-letting market to a halt.
Landowners le tting land and farmers seeking to rent land are holding off making decisions in the face of this uncertainty. The old adage, ‘when in doubt, stop' seems to be governing all sides.
Cork-based agric ultural consultant, Michael Brady, sees clear signs of a sharp fall-off in lettings over the last few weeks.
“Those considering letting or retiring are holding fire big-time,” Mr Brady said.
“Also those in the know are aware that extra land this year will not affect the CAP payment so, all in all, there's nothing new in the market,” he added.
Roy O'Brien of the IFA hosted a meeting of farmers in Athenr y las t week and said that among the 400 farmers, there was a lot of confusion.
“I found that even farmers who are normally on top of every aspect of their business are at a loss as to what to do, they are confused and not willing to make a move,” Mr O'Brien said.
Kilkenny auctioneer, Joseph Coogan, said it was a similar story in the southeast, with farmers slow to let go of land with entitlements attached.
“I am certainly seeing a lot of reluc tance on the par t of landowners to let land with entitlements. They are certainly afraid they will lose,” he said.
He pointed out t hat t he landowner was in the stronger position, while the prospective tenant, who needed the land and needed to know if he can get it, was in no man's land.
“People don't know where they stand at the moment, there's a lot of confusion around the whole question of letting and entitlements and it couldn' t be happening at a worse time of the year,” he said
However, the letting market hasn't come to a complete halt. Last week at a letting auction, Mr Coogan got €283/ac for a three-year lease on 53ac of grazing land.