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European young farmers set out three key areas for change in CAP 2020
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European young farmers set out three key areas for change in CAP 2020

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The European young farmers organisation CEJA has published its position paper on the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy.
The European young farmers organisation CEJA has published its position paper on the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy.

Largely speaking, the CEJA CAP submission is in line with a lot of the recommendations set out by Irish young farmers in the Macra na Feirme CAP policy paper.

CEJA’s plan focuses on the three key areas where change must happen – generational renewal, progressive and proactive environmental measures and sustainable economic support. This aims to ensure jobs, growth and investment in rural communities.

“By following our paper and introducing the measures that we have identified to support, sustain and indeed grow agriculture, we can ensure that the CAP remains true to its principles,” CEJA president and Cork dairy farmer Alan Jagoe said. “Civil society will see that the CAP is good value for money, while farmers, the environment and the consumer will ultimately all be the winners together.”

Included within the document is CEJA’s call for how to distribute the new and enlarged CAP budget:

  • 20% to be allocated to various measures and instruments specifically targeted to generational renewal.
  • 50% to be allocated to sustainable economic support.
  • 30% to be allocated to proactive and progressive environmental measures.
  • Policies

    It also takes a look at the definition of a young farmer, stating that they must be an active farmer, under 41 years of age and has agricultural education. It identifies the main barriers for young farmers as access to both land and credit, suggesting that funds be made available to start a land mobility service in each member state like the pilot programme started by Macra na Feirme in Ireland.

    Start-up aid

    CEJA is calling for start-up aid to be made mandatory in every member state throughout the entire budgetary period. The organisation supports better use of Knowledge Transfer incentives and a fully funded national reserve in member states.

    Direct payments

    It mirrors the Macra na Feirme CAP submission where it comes to farm supports, suggesting that they should be based on a combination of hectare-based payments, activity-based payments and in vulnerable sectors coupled support. It also says that a top-up for all young farmers must be provided in each on completion of a farm business plan.

    The document was peer reviewed by Prof Rogier Schulte and Dr Roel Jongeneel of Waggenin University.

    They said it built "a vision for European farming that may be sustained, in every sense of the word, into an uncertain future. Their submission makes our scientific quest for solutions rewarding and gives cause for optimism about the future of rural Europe that we are jointly contributing to.”

    To read the full document click here.

    Read more

    McConalogue calls for young farmer criteria to be changed

    Dempsey at large: Direct payments or the pension but not both

    Full coverage: CAP

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