Proposed reforms regressive step, says MEP

The proposed CAP reforms would be a regressive step, according to the agriculture spokesman for the European Conservatives and Reformists group.

MEP James Nicholson, Conservative and Unionist MEP for Northern Ireland, said the proposed reforms lacked vision.

“Previous reforms have focused on making agriculture more market orientated. This reform takes a step backwards,” he said.

“Farmers just want to do what they do best: produce food. These proposals put yet more obstacles in their way.

Mr Nicholson said the ‘greening measures’ would put an excessive burden on farmers and make it harder for them to produce food.

“At a time of rising food prices and fears regarding food security it is incredible that the EU wants to pay farmers to keep land fallow. I thought we had seen the end of this ridiculous idea.”

Ultimately, the proposal would result in a greater reliance on imports of food of a lower quality from outside the EU, he added.

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