Macra na Feirme has held high-level talks with the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine Charlie McConalogue, along with Ministers for State Senator Pippa Hackett, and Martin Heydon in a bid to outline the concerns of young farmers regarding the CAP Strategic Plan.
Macra na Feirme National President John Keane said: “It is paramount that this next CAP delivers for young farmers and that the interventions undertaken during its lifetime are supportive of the aspirations of young farmers in meeting the challenges of climate action, good environmental management, and ensure a sustainable income for the next generation of farmers”.
In highlighting the challenges ahead to the three Ministers, Macra na Feirme called on the Department of Agriculture to maximise the funding allocated to young farmer supports and interventions.
Mr. Keane added: “More of the same will not do in encouraging generational renewal and addressing the challenges ahead”.
Macra’s National President was joined at the meeting by Shane Fitzgerald, Chairman of Macra na Feirme’s National Agricultural Affairs Committee.
Mr. Fitzgerald said: “We have seen young farmers respond very positively to existing environmental schemes. Young farmers are more likely to engage in additional environmental schemes, to embrace changes and innovate to meet the challenges ahead.
“Priority must be given to the next generation along with higher financial rewards for greater environmental ambition. Young farmers are ready, willing and able to meet the climate challenge, but need the financial supports from CAP to realise that ambition”.
In his concluding remarks, Macra na Feirme National President, John Keane, said: “We look forward to continuing our engagement with Ministers McConalogue, Hackett and Heydon and the team of officials working on the CAP Strategic Plan. We are acutely aware of the very tight timeframes laid out by the EU Commission which the Department have to operate within”.