Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Young Farmers being let down by EU - Carthy

3 July, 2017 - by Matt Carthy MEP

Sinn Féin MEP for the Midlands North West, Matt Carthy, has said that a new report will reinforce the widely held view that CAP is not delivering for young farmers. Carthy, who is a member of the European Parliament’s Agriculture & Rural Development Committee, was responding to the publication of the Court of Auditor’s Report on EU support to young farmers. 


Carthy said:


“Despite €18.3billion (€8.7billion via national co-financing) being set aside for them, the number of young farmers in Europe is actually falling rapidly. This shows a complete failure of the current CAP to solve generational renewal problems.


“This latest report shows that neither the schemes, the system of payments nor the criteria currently expected of young farmers are actually meeting their needs.


“Although we have had problems at a national level, recently specifically regarding the Minister’s unfair change of educational rules, this report shows that many of the problems are originating in the European Commission.


“This report confirms that there is little to no evidence that current measures are helping young farmers due to insufficient targeting and low quality indicators. Further conclusions that the supports are poorly defined also shows a complete lack of understanding of the issues young farmers face. 


“The last decade has seen vast numbers of young people being forced out of rural areas due to lack of jobs, services, infrastructure and development.  The failures of the Early Retirement Scheme in the last CAP cycle have never addressed, and Commissioner Hogan has not produced a single piece of legislation that would attempt to reverse the falling number of young people getting into the sector.


“This damning report into his department shows thathe must wake up to the issues.


“Over the next few weeks I will be meeting with farming organisations across Ireland to discuss the best ways to both help young farmers and protect older people who may not be socially or economically secure enough to exit the sector.” 


Connect with Sinn Féin