Small farmers urged to demand fair deal on CAP
Published 20/05/2014 | 05:24
Fianna Fáil TD for Carlow-Kilkenny John McGuinness is warning small farmers to put pressure on the Minister for Agriculture or risk seeing CAP payments reduced this year.
Minster Coveney told the Dáil that he is to publish a draft proposal on CAP in the coming days and McGuinness says that it is vital that farmers act quickly to ensure they are not stepped on.
'Farmers must act now to demand a fair deal on CAP before the Minister submits his proposals to Brussels,' said Deputy McGuinness.
'This deal is a bad one for small family farms, it sees cuts to CAP funding, with a 3% reduction for Pillar 1 and a substantial 14% reduction in Pillar 2 money.
'This is the first time ever that a Minister has stood over cuts in CAP funding.
'These cuts will have a major impact on small family farmers in Carlow and it's essential that the farming community speaks up before any proposals are finalised.'
McGuinness said that farmers are already bearing the brunt of cuts such as changes to the Farm Assist Scheme and Single Farm Payment as well as increased operating costs and lower prices for their produce. As a result, he says that many a struggling to keep their farms viable.
'Minister Coveney needs to meet with farmers in Carlow and Kilkenny and listen to their very real concerns.
To date this year, he has only attended one public meeting on the CAP reforms.
'That's not good enough,' said Mr. McGuinness.
'Time is of the essence, and farmers need to make their voices heard now, before Minister Coveney's plans are finalised.'