Northern Ireland: Farmers facing one of worst potato harvests in years

Dairy farmers protest at Sainsbury’s in ColeraineThat’s because a late spring followed by a wet summer and difficulties in securing arable land have posed problems for the local industry. The poor weather has been exacerbated by rules governing the grants payable to potato growers and the land available to them, according to the Department of Agriculture (DARD). MLAs have raised their fears for the sector at Stormont and requested government support. In a tabled question, Upper Bann DUP MLA Stephen Moutray asked the minister for her assessment of the problems facing the potato farming sector. Sinn Fein’s Michelle O’Neill said steps were being taken to tackle the farmers’ problems. New potatoes grown in Northern Ireland have arrived on the shop shelves two weeks later than usual. More

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