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Keeping farmers informed on CAP reform

18/10/2011


Scottish farmers will be consulted and kept fully informed throughout the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reform negotiations, Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead pledged today.

The five-point plan, which will ensure that farmers and key stakeholders are aware of the latest developments and can make their voices heard, was announced today, ahead of this week's EU Agrifish Council. This will be the first discussion by European agricultural ministers since the European Commission's draft CAP proposals were unveiled last week.

The five-point plan covers:

  • Writing to all farmers in the next few weeks explaining what the Commission proposals are, what they mean and what the Scottish Government is doing
  • A public consultation on the Commission's proposals
  • A series of public meetings around Scotland where senior government officials will explain the proposals
  • A new CAP section on the Scottish Government website to keep everyone up-to-date with the latest developments on the CAP negotiations
  • Continuing to work with stakeholders through the Future CAP Stakeholder Group to help inform Scotland's negotiating position

Mr Lochhead said:

"The European Commission has now fired the starting gun on vital negotiations on the future of the Common Agricultural Policy.

"This week the formal negotiations begin in earnest and I will be in Luxembourg to make sure Scotland's voice is heard loud and clear in the corridors of power. I am determined to ensure we secure a fair deal for Scotland's farmers.

"I am also determined to keep Scotland's farmers fully informed as the negotiations progress - after all, it is their livelihood which will be directly affected.

"That's why I have today unveiled a five-point engagement plan to allow farmers, and other interested parties, to keep up to speed and make their views heard.

"I am sure the negotiations will be a long process and I know we will not get everything we want. However, working together, and with the support of farmers, I am confident that we can deliver for Scotland's farmers."