The CAP simplification proposed by EU Commissioner Phil Hogan, which allows for preliminary checks on applications, the reduction of penalties, and a yellow card system for first offenders, was welcomed by IFA deputy president Tim O’Leary on Thursday.

O’Leary said the simplification is positive and going in the right direction.

“Simplification and reducing penalties was one of the very first issues IFA raised with Phil Hogan when he became EU Agriculture Commissioner. [This] will reduce the unnecessary stress burden on farmers,” he said.

He also commented on the need for preliminary checks of applications to allow for farmers to make corrections after submission without penalties, saying that it was important that the Department provided this service.

“It is very important that the Department of Agriculture provides this service to farmers this year as it would undoubtedly reduce errors and penalties,” he said.

Making farmers’ lives easier

COPA-COGEGA, the united voice of EU farmers and cooperatives, also welcomed the new package of measures to simplify CAP, claiming it will “make life easier for farmers”.

“Excessive red tape and bureaucracy stifles innovation and efficiency. A top priority for us is to deliver a real simplification of the CAP to make life easier for farmers, especially the complicated greening measures,” secretary general of COPA-COGEGA Pekka Pesonen said.

He continued: “These measures, which we have been calling for, are a step forward and will cut down on the excessive and costly bureaucracy facing farmers. We urge Commissioner Hogan to carry on with the simplification process so that farmers can get on with their jobs and produce quality food to feed a growing population.”

Hogan announced the proposals when addressing the European Commission in Brussels earlier this week.

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