In a statement, Mr Swann said: “I firmly raised the option of machinery tagging by asking the minister that, following the farm vehicle marking scheme, if she will consider funding a trial to allow farmers to purchase tracking devices to be fitted to agricultural machinery.
“There has also been a number of recent successes in recovering stolen agricultural machinery where CCTV in a number of rural towns and villages was used.
“I asked the justice minister to pursue a more joined-up approach in capturing this data, with the possibility of siting a number of additional cameras across key locations.
“A proactive approach is necessary if the minister and PSNI are to get a handle on tackling rural crime seriously.
“There is the real danger that if the authorities do not tackle the scourge of rural crime head-on, some farmers may be forced to leave the sector altogether because of the loss of machinery or livestock.”