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17/09/2021

Extension to CAP consultation process welcomed

Donegal IFA AGM - Agriculture  Minister Charlie McConalogue confident that farmers can overcome challenges ahead

Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue TD

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue has announced that he is extending the public consultation on the draft interventions proposed for the 2023-2027 CAP Strategic Plan by a week.

Farmers now have until Friday, September 3 to make submissions under the consultation process, the previous deadline was August 27.

Minister McConalogue said he is committed to ensuring that all farmers have an opportunity to have their voices heard as part of the consultation process. The Minister also called three townhall meetings in August as part of the consultation process to give farmers an update on the draft interventions.

“I have said from the start that I want farmers to be at the very centre of the entire CAP process,” stressed the Minister.

“This is one of the most important CAP programme in the history of the policy so it is crucial that farmers have their voices heard. That is why I have moved to provide an extra week as part of this current consultation process allowing farmers until Friday, September 3 to make a submission.

“It's critical to note that we are just in a consultation process with nothing set in stone. I committed to bringing this CAP consultation to every farmer in the country and I am doing that.”

The Minister also confirmed that he will lead a further consultation process later in the year before the final CAP programme is sent to the European Commission for scrutiny no later than January 1, 2022.

He reiterated that “no decision has been made or taken, I want farmers to feed in as much as possible. It's their CAP reform.

“I said once the CAP deal received political agreement in Luxembourg earlier in the summer that I am committed to bringing this CAP deal to every calving shed, every milking parlour, every tillage field and every kitchen table and I intend on doing that.”

IFA President Tim Cullinan has welcomed the decision noting: “There are many aspects of the proposals which are unacceptable and IFA will be making a comprehensive submission in consultation with our committees,” he said.

However, he continued, “we need time to debate the issues around this CAP reform, which will have significant ramifications for the incomes of farmers”.

The IFA president said the original closing date of Friday, August 27 was “far too tight” for submissions.

“The Department has made the correct decision to extend the deadline to give more time for proper consideration,” he said.

“We want to have extensive dialogue with our membership before we make our submission.”

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