Ireland’s CAP Strategic Plan approved by Government

It has been described by Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue as a "farmer-friendly, fair, and well-funded CAP".
Ireland’s CAP Strategic Plan approved by Government

The plan, brought to Cabinet this morning by Mr McConalogue, received the green light from the European Commission in August.

Ireland's finalised CAP Strategic Plan 2023-2027 has been approved by Cabinet today.

The plan, which had already received the green light from the European Commission in August, has been described by Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue as a "farmer-friendly, fair, and well-funded CAP".

Mr McConalogue said that his department has commenced work on the preparatory steps for the implementation of schemes ahead of their upcoming launch dates.

The final approval by the Government comes in time to allow implementation of the plan to commence from January 1, 2023.

Deliver to farm families

"It will deliver some €9.8bn to our farm families over the next five years to support them to continue to produce world-class, safe, and sustainable food as well as supporting them in their important work of meeting our climate ambitions," Mr McConalogue said.

“I acknowledge the support of the rest of the Cabinet, in particular, Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath, who have always understood the need for supporting our farm families through the CAP. 

“There has also been constructive engagement from all ministers throughout the process, which delivered not just increased funding for the sector but also featured closer collaboration than ever before from all of the relevant departments in the design of the plan. 

"This collaboration will continue throughout the implementation process as we seek to achieve in particular the maximum environmental ambition through close monitoring and evaluation of progress.”

'Very different from previous plans'

Minister of State for land use and biodiversity Pippa Hackett said that this CAP is "very different from previous plans".

"It contains a host of measures that I know will deliver for farmers, their families, and their incomes, while also protecting our soil, water, habitats, and climate," Ms Hackett said. 

“In particular, I am pleased with the five-fold increase in funding to support organic farming which will help us achieve our target of 330,000 hectares of organically farmed land by the end of the upcoming CAP period.

“It will also support women who are heads of farm households. I am very happy to see that women farmers will qualify for higher TAMS grants and also that there will be separate knowledge transfer groups for women.” 

Ms Hackett said she is confident that this CAP will deliver results "for our farmers, for nature, for biodiversity, and for climate".

“The soil sampling programme, the farm environment study, the Life projects we support, and the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan are all feeding into this plan, while we are also building on our EIP knowledge and experience by incorporating new EIPs to help breeding waders and to target water quality," she added.

Reach a wider audience of farmers

Minister of State with responsibility for research and development, farm safety, and new market development Martin Heydon said that central to this CAP's success is "protecting farm incomes and underpinning food production across Europe while delivering on a range of policy objectives".

"This strategic plan marks a step change in how farmer’s health, safety, and wellbeing is integrated into farm supports," Mr Heydon commented.

“Across a range of schemes, we have built-in health and safety training while also prioritising it in the on-farm capital investment scheme. 

"This will ensure we reach a wider audience of farmers than we have in previous CAPs - a positive from a farm safety and farm efficiency perspective. 

"I believe this plan will help to drive down the unacceptable high number of fatal incidents on farms in the years ahead.” 

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