A safety

The outbreak of COVID-19 has challenged all of us as individuals, as a society and as businesses and employers. There are weeks and potentially months of disruption ahead of us, but there will be an end to it. Life will return to a new kind of normal but in the meantime, we all need to pull through this together. You will need support and you will need to give support to others: employees, family members and your local community. The organisations listed below will provide you with business advice and guidance during these unprecedented times.

Contact to discuss any issues of concern by phone. For a full list of Horticulture staff contacts visit: https://www.teagasc.ie/crops/horticulture.

The Department has a range of online facilities and can provide information to clients over the phone or by email. These services should be used where possible, and unnecessary visits to public offices should be avoided. For contact details visit: https://www.agriculture.gov.ie/contact

At Bord Bia, we have always believed in taking a structured and strategic response to challenging times and this current period will be no different. Each decision that we make and course of action that we take will be guided by our strategic principles and the current challenges facing each sector as our work continues; bringing Ireland’s outstanding food, drink and horticulture to the world.

For contact information visit: https://www.bordbia.ie/about/contact-us. Or email directly: info@bordbia.ie. Or contact directly your Bord Bia Sector Manager.

Ibec is available to support members throughout this crisis. You can contact your Employer Relations Executive directly or you can access our Employer Relations Knowledge Centre Services hub online: ibec.ie. During the COVID-19 period, call the following numbers for any general Ibec reception queries: (01) 605 1790 or (01) 605 1791.

You can also leave a voice message on (01) 605 1500 or email us on info@ibec.ie.

Retail Excellence are working hard supporting their members through this period. All queries should go through their Head Office phone number (065) 68 469 27. Please be patient, they will respond to all queries as quickly as possible.


Business Support Call Centre –
Operated by DBEI to advise on all Government supports now available to businesses that are affected by COVID-19. Call: (01) 631 2002.

Business Continuity Planning Checklist COVID-19 –
DBEI identifies key risks and preparatory actions that can be taken. Visit: dbei.gov.ie.

Temporary COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Scheme –
The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme will be available to employers who keep employees on the payroll throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

The subsidy will refund employers up to a maximum of €410 per each qualifying employee. Visit: www.revenue.ie.

COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment –
A support payment for the self-employed who have lost business and to those who have lost employment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This support pays a flat rate of €350 per week for a six-week period. Visit: www.mywelfare.ie.

Short-time Work Support –
For employees of businesses that need to reduce hours or days worked. Visit: www.mywelfare.ie.

Finance in Focus grant of €7,200 –
Available to Enterprise Ireland and Údarás na Gaeltachta clients that want to access consultancy support to undertake immediate finance reviews.

LEO business continuity vouchers from €2,500 –
to assist in preparing any business continuity issues that arise in the current challenging environment.

The Credit Guarantee Scheme supports loans up to €1 million for periods of up to seven years. Applications can be made to AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank.

Microenterprises can access COVID-19 loans of up to €50,000 from MicroFinance Ireland. Loans are available at an interest rate of between 6.8% and 7.8%.

Businesses can apply through their Local Enterprise Office or directly at microfinanceireland.ie.

€200m SBCI COVID-19 Working Capital Scheme for eligible businesses
– Maximum loan size will be €1.5 million (first €500,000 unsecured) and the maximum interest rate will be 4%. Applications can be made through the SBCI website at sbci.gov.ie.

€200m Package for Enterprise Supports and Rescue and Restructuring Scheme
– Available through Enterprise Ireland for vulnerable but viable firms that need to restructure or transform their business.


The COVID-19 crisis is presenting immediate and severe financial challenges for businesses.

Here are some practical steps you can take:

1. Talk to your bank. All the banks have announced that they will offer flexibility to their customers, and they may be able to provide payment holidays or emergency working capital facilities.

2. Take immediate steps to manage your cashflows. Look for scope to: lower variable costs; delay discretionary spend; extend your payables; expedite your receivables; explore supply chain financing options

3. Use available government supports for working capital

4. Get advice from your accountant or use the advisory support available from your local LEO.

5. Check your insurance cover. Check if your insurance policy covers you for an interruption in your business, or a temporary business closure, caused by COVID-19.

6. Engage with Revenue. Revenue has posted advice for businesses experiencing trading difficulties as a result of COVID-19. This includes information on tax returns, the application of late payment interest, debt enforcement, tax clearance and customs. See www.revenue.ie.

7. Be aware of government supports