CAP obligations will be greatest for intensive agriculture – Creed
Minister Creed said enhanced enivronmental obligations would be shouldered by those involved in intensive agriculture not those on marginal land.

Environmental and climate obligations under the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) will be greatest for those involved in intensive agriculture.

Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said the greater focus in terms of sustainability after CAP 2020 reforms will be for more intensive forms of agricultural activity.

He made the comments in the Dáil on Thursday (6 December) in response to a question from Sinn Féin spokesperson on agriculture Martin Kenny TD.

Marginal land

Deputy Kenny asked the Minister if he shared many farmers’ fears that those on more marginal land would be left to shoulder the majority of the burden when it came to environmental and climate action.

In response, Minister Creed said: “I would like to be able to reassure the deputy that the final outcome [of CAP reforms] will meet the objectives that he aspires to.

"The onus and obligation will be greatest on those who are involved in intensive agricultural activity where the challenge to the landscape, the emissions profile, etc, is far more than those that are involved in less intensive forms of agriculture.”

Conditionality

The European Commission’s draft proposals for CAP 2020 include replacing cross compliance with conditionality.

Commission officials from DG Agri have stated that there will be no backsliding on environmental regulations in CAP 2020.

Instead, it will include additional EU regulations, such as the nitrates directive and the water framework directive.

Deputy Kenny said that farmers had serious concerns over the inclusion of eco-schemes as part of pillar one.

These concerns arose from a fear that conditions normally reserved for pillar two environmental schemes such as GLAS would become mandatory under pillar one.

User-friendly

In response, Minster Creed said: “Our objective is to make the new common agricultural policy as user-friendly as possible, but within the context of the clear direction of travel.

"This is to have a CAP that is far greener in its hue and assist us in meeting the challenging obligations we have, particularly in the area of climate change.”

He said farmers in more marginal areas would be recognised for the benefits less intensive agriculture brought, such as huge biodiversity gains and water quality.

In pictures: cows average €1,450 at Wexford clearance sale
On average, the 56 cows calving from January to March next year made €1,450 each at the Drohan clearance sale in New Ross last Saturday, Patrick Browne and Jack Kennedy report.

Farmers came from Waterford, Wexford, Kilkenny and Kildare to buy stock at the Drohan clearance sale in New Ross last Saturday.

On average, the 56 cows (all four or five stars) calving from January to March next year made €1,450 each.

Prices ranged from less than €1,000 for the very old cows right up to €2,000 for the tops.

The top third of stock made in the €1,400 to €1,700 range, with plainer cows down around €1,300.

There were 10 heifers also on sale and they made between €1,500 and €1,700 each.

Sample prices

This 680kg Simmental born in January 2014 made €1,570. \ Patrick Browne

This 560kg Limousin born in January 2015 made €1,520. \ Patrick Browne

This 620kg Limousin born in April 2015 made €1,500. \ Patrick Browne

This 590kg Simmental born in January 2016 made €1,520. \ Patrick Browne

This 620kg Simmental born in January 2015 made €1,400. \ Patrick Browne

This 695kg Simmental born in January 2017 made €1,620. \ Patrick Browne

This 670kg Simmental born in January 2015 made €1,550. \ Patrick Browne

This 710kg Simmental born in January 2015 made €1,750. \ Patrick Browne

Patrick Drohan was a member of the Teagasc/Irish Farmers Journal BETTER Farm beef programme.

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Five-star clearance makes five-star prices in Wexford

Roscommon farm family returns home after eviction
Last Tuesday, the family was evicted from their home and adjoining farm after it was repossessed and a security firm was hired to guard the property.

A Roscommon farmer and his family, who were evicted from their home in Falsk, near Strokestown, Co Roscommon on Tuesday of last week, have returned to their home, the Irish Farmers Journal understands.

Last Tuesday, the family was evicted from the home and adjoining farm after it was repossessed and a security firm was hired to guard the property.

It is now being reported by a local anti-eviction activist and RTÉ News that at least one member of the family evicted last week returned to the house on Monday evening.

Attach

In the early hours of Sunday morning, security personnel who were guarding the house came under attack from a group armed with baseball bats. Three people were hospitalised and a dog was killed.

A Garda spokesperson told the Irish Farmers Journal on Sunday: "A number of people were injured during the incident and three required hospital treatment.

“A number of vehicles were set on fire and a dog was also seriously injured and had to be put down as a result.”

Complaints

On Monday evening, a spokesperson for An Garda Síochána said: “There were two written complaints made to gardaí in relation to the original incident of the repossession of the house in Strokestown.

“Both complaints are being investigated by gardaí,” the spokesperson

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Several injured in attack on Co Roscommon farm

‘Vulture funds should cease the act of forced eviction’

‘Vulture funds should cease the act of forced eviction’
“Dragging people out of their homes will not solve the problem, only inflame an already highly charged situation,” Seamus Sherlock of the ICSA has said.

Financial institutions and vulture funds should cease the draconian act of forced eviction, ICSA rural development chair Seamus Sherlock has said.

“The unfortunate scenes at a Roscommon farmyard over recent days were reminiscent of something from the turn of the century.

"Nobody wants to see families being dragged out of their homes by security personnel.

“There has to be a better way. [The] ICSA’s mantra has always been mediation not confrontation.

Move forward

"Banks and vulture funds must sit down with families and explore every avenue to restructure the debt so that all parties can move forward with consensus and certainty.

“Dragging people out of their homes will not solve the problem, only inflame an already highly charged situation,” he said.

Sherlock commented that the ICSA is at the forefront of dealing with people in debt and has seen a sharp rise in the number of people seeking help with efforts to restructure their debt issues with lenders.

“Now, however, our worst fear of a situation like in Roscommon has come true.

"Violence at farm gates is not the answer; mediation is the only show in town and [the] ICSA are here to assist farm families who are making a genuine effort to honour their commitments,” Sherlock said.

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Several injured in attack on Co Roscommon farm

Young bull stolen from Cavan farm