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​This programme aims to incentivise farmers to purchase and spread Calcium ground limestone/Magnesium ground limestone. It will provide a financial contribution to participating farmers per tonne of lime applied. This is an innovative programme which aims to neutralise soil acidity and improve the availability of nutrients in the soil. The Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine will make a financial contribution to the participating farmer to offset part of the cost of purchasing and spreading Calcium ground limestone (CaCo3) or Magnesium (dolomitic) ground limestone (CaMg (CO3)2.


1. What is the National Liming Programme 2023?
Answer: This programme aims to incentivise farmers to purchase and spread Calcium ground limestone/Magnesium ground limestone, in accordance with the lime requirement stated in the soil analysis report. The programme will provide a financial contribution of €16 to participating farmers per tonne of lime delivered and spread on their holding.

2. How can I apply for the Liming Programme?
Answer: Applicants (or their advisor) must complete an online Application Form on www.agfood.ie, the Department’s online service by selecting the AgSchemes-Expression of Interest and then National Liming Programme 2023

3. Are all Farmers eligible to apply?
Answer: No. Farmers that availed of a Nitrates Derogation in 2022 or 2023 and farmers with a grassland stocking rate above 170kg livestock manure nitrogen/ha prior to export in 2022 are not eligible to participate in this programme as liming is a mandatory minimum requirement on these farms.

4. Are all land areas eligible to be included in the Liming Programme 2023?
Answer: No. The following areas are excluded from the Liming Programme, Commonage land, forestry, lands under Natura 2000, NHA/pNHA designation as well as Annex 1 grassland and Environmentally sensitive permanent grassland.

5. Are Herdowners participating in the 2023 Soil sampling and Liming Eco-scheme practice eligible to apply for the Liming Programme?
Answer: No. Herdowners who are participating or intend to participate in the 2023 Eco-Scheme practice relating to soil sampling and liming are not eligible to participate in this programme given this action would be already supported under that measure..

6. What is min and max amount of lime that can be subsidised under the programme.
Answer: Payment will only be made on valid claims relating to a minimum of 10 tonnes of ground limestone and a maximum of 200 tonnes.

7. What are the criteria to qualify?
Answer: (a)Applicants that have submitted a Basic Payment scheme (BPS) application in 2022 and/or a Basic Income Support for Sustainability (BISS) application in 2023 are eligible to apply. (b) Must have soil test reports for the land (within the last 4 years from date of purchase) that indicates a lime requirement

8. How do I know if approved?
Answer: A Letter of Approval will issue to each successful applicant confirming the tonnage approved after all applications have been assessed.

9. Can I purchase lime before receiving the approval letter?
Answer: Yes. Ground limestone invoiced and paid for on or after the date of submission of a valid application is eligible for consideration under the Scheme. However, applicants should be aware that there is no certainty that the full quantity of lime applied for will be approved.

10. Will all Lime delivered, and spread be grant aided?
Answer: In the event of eligible applications being received in excess of the available budget, the Department may reduce the tonnage of ground limestone to be approved per applicant as appropriate. The Letter of Approval will indicate the tonnage approved. Therefore, expenditure incurred prior to receipt of the Letter of Approval is entirely at the applicant’s own risk.

11. Where can I purchase Lime?
Answer: The ground limestone must be purchased directly from a licenced quarry. A list of licenced quarries is available at https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/30b1d-trade-imports-exports-fertilisers-and-limestone/#list-of-active-limestone-quarries

12. How do I apply for payment?
Answer: To receive payment, approved applicants must up-load Invoices showing the date, quantity of ground limestone purchased and the cost per tonne. Invoices may be lodged from the date the claim system is available on Agfood until the 31st October 2023.

13. How many claims can be submitted?
Answer: One claim per approved applicant will be allowed to be submitted, with a maximum of 5 Invoices.

14. Are Partnerships eligible to apply?
Answer: Partnerships can apply but will be limited to one application per partnership irrespective of number of partners and subject to the maximum eligible 200 tonnes

15. When will payments issue?
Answer: Payments will be made towards the end of 2023 after BISS areas have been finalised to allow cross checks be carried out to exclude any non-eligible land.

16. Is there a maximum application rate of ground limestone per hectare?
Answer: Yes. The maximum eligible application rate is 7.5tonnes per hectare. However, Ground limestone can only be applied in accordance with the lime requirement stated on up-to-date soil analysis reports (maximum of 4 years old from date of purchase).

17. Do I need to submit soil analysis reports with my claim?
Answer: No. However, the Department may request soil reports as part of our administration and compliance checks.

18. What is the Agriculture De Minimis Regulation?
Answer: This refers to the regulations under which the Liming Programme is funded. The maximum amount of De Minimis aid a single recipient can receive is €20,000 over any consecutive three-year fiscal period.

19. What schemes are covered under De Minimis Regulations?
Answer: Please see a list of the Agri De Minims schemes listed below:
• BEEP Payments
• BVD Compensation BEEF
• BVD Compensation DAIRY
• Bovine EID Tag Subsidy Scheme
• Calf Investment Scheme
• Financial Assist AI Outbreaks in Poultry
• Fodder Measure For Tillage Farmers 2018
• Kerry Purebred Cattle Scheme
• Multi Species Sward Measure/Red Clover Silage Measure
• Pig Exceptional Payment Scheme 2022

Contact us today about the National Liming Programme

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