Hogan warns 'hobby and sofa farmers' EU payments will be scrutinised in reform
European Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan has given his biggest indication that people not actively engaged in agricultural activity will be excluded from EU payments in new reforms.
Addressing the Seanad yesterday, Commissioner Hogan also gave reassurance to part-time farmers that they will not be excluded from payments in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).
“These people are actively involved in farming the land.
“Only those people who engage in hobby farming, or sofa farming as we call it, have reason to be scrutinised in respect of getting money from the CAP for not being engaged in agriculture,” he said.
The Commissioner also addressed the hot topic amongst farmers of capping payments to farmers.
At the moment there is a cap of €150,000 on payments in Ireland.
Mr Hogan said the Commission will be proposing a €60,000 cap for all farmers in the European Union a proposal which the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said he supports.
“Whatever I propose it will be a matter for the Member States and the European Parliament to agree.