Speaking in Brussels ahead of the official publication of the CAP document in Brussels today (Wed), IFA President John Bryan said the proposals would be very negative for Irish agriculture and active farmers.
He said, “Commissioner Ciolos is creating a serious conflict between our ambitions to increase productionand what he wants in CAP post-2013. The flat-rate and ‘greening’ proposals will cause huge disruption at farm level and take Irish agriculture in the wrong direction. They have the potential to undermine farmers’ business decisions and investment plans, increase overhead costs and impose a whole new level of bureaucracy and red-tape. IFA will oppose vigorously these proposals, which will undercut active farmers and damage our productive base.”
Mr Bryan said the Commission proposals should serve as a wake-up call for the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney and the Government. He said “Given the importance of our agri-food sector, the Government must place itself at the centre of the negotiations over the next 12 months to ensure an outcome that supports active farmers, preserves the family farm model and maximises agriculture’s productive capacity.”
John Bryan said, “The final draft seen by IFA suggests imposing extra bureaucracy and a limit on production. This flies in the face of the Commission’s aims to ensure food security, sustainable production and maintaining farming and economic activity in marginal areas. Irish agriculture is well positioned to meet these criteria and the Commissioner will have to revise these elements of his proposals.”
The IFA President chaired a meeting of the IFA Executive Council in Portlaoise last night, which heard strong opposition to the flat-rate and ‘greening’ measures. “Members were adamant that farmers already adhere to very strict compliance regulations. Imposing further rules that are excessively rigid would put producers at a disadvantage and will have to be changed.”