Plans from the Food Vision Dairy Group show they want the Irish government to compensate farmers up to €5000 per animal to cull their cows.

The influential report is making the recommendations to ‘directly reduce agricultural activity’ and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For every 10,000 cows culled, the Department for Agriculture in Ireland estimate 45,000t of carbon dioxide equivalent would be cut from the atmosphere. The current TB scheme puts the value of a dairy cow at €4300 for compensation – however others in the sector want a payment over €5000 to account for reduced future earnings.

Other measures being proposed include a trading mechanism for emissions on farms, and reducing artificial nitrogen by 10% to 20% on dairy farms, which is estimated to result in a 10% cut in farm profitability. Further methane inhibiters for dairy cows are planned by 2030 with an estimated cost of between €75 to €100 per dairy cow. The Food Vision Dairy Group is chaired by the former director of Teagasc, Gerry Boyle.