'A culture change is needed to allow farmers farm without fear'
The EU Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan has said that a culture change must happen to help farmers survive and not worry about their income if they make a mistake.
Speaking on a Facebook live broadcast, the day after the Commission published a paper on the future of the CAP, Hogan said that to-date the CAP has been rules based and sanction based, which all leads to a climate of fear around inspections.
"Some 46pc of farmers incomes for many is from the EU. And if they make a mistake they are worried about income.
"I have tried to reform policy to allow farmer to minimise errors and have asked Member States to help farmers to comply with getting their money."
And he said a culture change is needed to help farmers to survive and get the necessary supports they need so they can continue to provide essential work and goods.
Young farmers, he said, must also be supported and he said he has been promoting the position of young people in agriculture. Member States, he said, can do a lot around encouraging this through incentives such as farm mobility and inheritance tax.
"It's not acceptable that only 6pc of the EU's farmers are under 35," he said.
He also said that smaller and medium-sized farms must be supported more with financial instruments and targeted income supports.