Bank of Ireland: Supporting Farmers Through Wet Weather Challenges

Eoin Lowry, Head of Agri Sector,  Bank of Ireland Business Banking

As the wet weather persists Bank of Ireland is encouraging under-pressure farmers to swiftly engage with their accountants, financial advisers or banks to explore the range of flexible financing options available to help them deal with the ongoing impact of sodden on-farm conditions.

We understand that this is a particularly challenging time for farmers coping with the unrelenting wet weather and Bank of Ireland is here to help. As the leading lender to Ireland’s agriculture industry, we know that farmers require a level of flexibility when engaging with their financial providers and we are keenly aware of the current concerns facing them including:

• Increased costs driven by a very long winter and inclement spring

• Cost overhangs from 2023 due to weak farm gate prices and ever-rising input prices

• Available cash balances used up – farmers now dealing with decreased cashflow

• Farmers forced to provide supplementary feeds to livestock, whilst the sowing of crops remains on hold as the country waits for a sustained dry spell

Bank of Ireland has an experienced team of agri advisers ready to assist and continues to engage with key agriculture industry stakeholders to alleviate the pressures on farmers. Agri loan applications are being prioritised, speeding up the time from initial application to money hitting farmers accounts, and we also have a range of flexible financial supports on offer including:

• Providing overdraft extensions

• Offering flexible term loans

• Retrospectively financing previous investments made from cashflow

These measures are designed to help farmers, with targeted loans allowing increased financial breathing space and helping to spread the cost of additional inputs such as straw or fodder over an agreed and flexible term.

There are a range of ways to contact Bank of Ireland and I would underline the need for farmers not to panic and to continue looking after themselves and their families. The rain will stop falling eventually and, with the right financial plans in place, we can ensure that agri businesses nationwide can look forward to brighter days ahead.

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