RPA figures and comments about single farm payment progress leave industry in despair

The Rural Payments Agency has issued its fortnightly figures designed to show the progress it has made in clearing the single farm payment backlog.

As of Wednesday (11, October) there were 75 commercial farmers waiting for a payment and another 6300 producers waiting for a top-up.

But another 3013 pony paddock claimants were also yet to see a penny of their money.

The RPA said that 113,461 applicants had now received a total of £1.5bn in full or partial payments.

But Tony Cooper, acting RPA chief executive, told NFU Council on Tuesday that he had no clear idea of when 2006 single payments were likely to be made and it could be another “18 months to two years” before the RPA is in a position to provide an acceptable level of service.

NFU president Peter Kendall said: “What we have heard confirms our worst fears. Yet again, the farming industry is being made to pay the price for a diabolical political decision delivered in an unrealistic timescale.
“The gap between English farmers and our near neighbours is becoming ever wider, with the Irish & French paying 50% advances ahead of the payment window and the Welsh scheduled to make full payments in December.”

*For more detail of the meeting see Farmers Weekly magazine out on Friday (13 October)

Single Farm Payment Scheme special report

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