ICSA president Edmond Phelan has said Taoiseach Leo Varadkar must remain resolute in his opposition to any proposed cut in the CAP Budget. “It is unconscionable that CAP should be in the firing line for cuts under the terms of the new EU Budget for 2021-2027. The very future of Irish farming is at stake and any influence we have at EU level must be leveraged in order to put any talk of a cuts to the CAP budget to bed.”
Mr Varadkar has so far said that while Ireland is prepared to increase its net contribution to the overall EU budget, he will not accept significant cuts to CAP.
Continuing Mr Phelan said, “We cannot continue to expect our farmers to do more with less and less. It is right for the EU Budget to be ambitious, but those ambitions must be realistic and must not lose sight of the importance of securing sustainable food production systems and maintaining rural economies. Margins are being squeezed in all sectors, but particularly so in beef and sheep, and any cut in CAP would put countless numbers of farmers out of business. At the very minimum the CAP Budget needs to maintained at its current level so that farmers can remain in business and continue to produce high quality food while being expected to do more on climate change.”