The IFA will meet MEPs on Wednesday to outline its demands for the next Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

Top of the agenda is the possible CAP rollover as Brexit negotiations drag on. The IFA has insisted that if the CAP is rolled over, then any cuts to direct payments need to be avoided.

On the issue of Brexit itself, the IFA has reiterated the need for frictionless border trade post-Brexit. It also raised the issue of the impact of Brexit on the beef price.

The IFA is set to tell MEPs that beef farmers need to be compensated to the tune of €20 per head for every 5c/kg price drop.

Common Agricultural Policy

The IFA will relay a number of its key points for the next CAP. High up on that list is the need for upwards-only convergence and the introduction of a coupling payment to develop targeted support for farmers in “vulnerable sectors”.

The European Commission has placed an emphasis on member states ensuring that payments are only directed at “genuine farmers”. Although the IFA does not provide a definition for a genuine farmer and says that the issue needs to be “fully explored”, it did raise the issue of farmers leasing their entitlements after exiting farming.

On the subject of rural development, the IFA would like to see TAMs open to all farm sectors and the level of grant aid rise to 70% for young farmers and 50% for all other farmers.

Animal payments

The association would also like to see an additional €300m added to the ANC scheme, a €200/cow suckler payment and a €30/ewe payment.

In addition, as concerns about anti-microbial resistance rise, the VAT rate of 23% on non-oral animal medicine - including vaccines - must be dropped, it says.

The thorny issue of labelling will also be raised with MEPs and the IFA will insist that further legislation is needed to include wholesale and loose meat products.

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