The EU Commission this morning confirmed that 80% of CAP payments go to 20% of farmers, in the course of discussing the future of the essential support package to farmers.
Following today's agri committee Mairead McGuinness MEP noted that the concept of “fairness” has not yet been defined by the Commission.
“The Commission, which mentions fairness in its comments in the next CAP, cannot provide us with a definition of fairness, other than saying the concept comes up in the public debate and is linked to the much used 80/20 discussion, which points to 80% of payments going to 20% of farmers,” said Ms McGuinness, European Parliament Vice-President.
This morning the commission clarified these figures by stating that this breakdown is a logical consequence of the realities of land distribution whereby 20% of farmers work 80% of the land.
“The Commission further clarified that 71% of supports goes to farms in the range of 5-250ha - which changes the perception of the payments as these farms are perfectly normal family farms.
“Despite highlighting the 80:20 divide in the CAP and Budget papers, the Commission today urged MEPs not to draw conclusions too quickly from the 80:20 figures.
“But it did say there is good reason to look at the very big beneficiaries - a position the Parliament has always supported,” Ms McGuinness said.
She further explained that changes to the CAP are unlikely to come into effect in 2021, with the likelihood of a sufficiently long transition period to enable member states, the Commission and farmers to adjust to any new regime