A new support package worth up to Pound 2million for Northern Ireland's pig farmers is about to open for applications, Agricultural Minister Edwin Poots MLA has announced.
Speaking at the Balmoral Show, DAERA Minister Edwin Poots said: "This scheme will open next week to support the sector which has faced significant challenges recently.
"Up to Pound 2million will be made available for local pig farmers impacted by the effects of weakening markets, increased feed costs and getting pigs moved off the farm for slaughter.
"I announced in March that I was convinced the sector needs emergency financial support due to factors outside the farmers control such as international supply and demand, labour availability in the processing sector, rising feed costs and repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic.
"This is a short term targeted support measure but farmers need more from their partners in the supply chain if economic viability and supply of pig meat is to be sustained."
The scheme will make payments to those pig producers who incurred price penalties on overweight pigs that were outside contract specifications from September 2021 to February 2022 due to the backlog situation on farms.
Eligible pig producers will receive a letter inviting them to apply through DAERA Online Services.