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MP meets with local NFU group over CAP reform

April 9, 2013 2:24 PM

TF ruralSouth Lakes MP Tim Farron has met with representatives from the local Kendal branch of the National Farmers Union to discuss the need to ensure that the negotiations over the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy meet the needs of Cumbrian farmers.

At the meeting local farmers including NFU Kendal Branch Chair, Derek Lomax, raised their concerns regarding the potential impact that changes to the CAP could have on them, including issues surrounding the higher level of modulation used in the UK, which disadvantages British farmers, as well as problems surrounding the greening of pillar one.

As Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Hill Farming Group Tim has been working closely with the National Farmers' Union, Natural England, other Parliamentary colleagues and Ministers to ensure that Cumbria's farmers don't lose out in the negotiations currently taking place in Europe over the new CAP which is due to be introduced in 2014. Concerns have been raised that the proposed changes to CAP could result in significantly lower payments for farmers, especially those in the uplands, which would threaten the viability of faming businesses; however Tim is determined to prevent this.

Commenting Tim said: "This was an incredibly useful meeting for me and it gave me an opportunity to hear firsthand about the issues which are concerning our local farmers. The changes being discussed in Europe at the moment surrounding CAP reform will have a huge impact on all farmers across Cumbria so it is absolutely vital that they have their voices heard. One key change that the UK government could make would be to cut the level of modulation that our farmers have to pay to bring us in line with the lower levels of modulation paid by farmers elsewhere in the EU.

"I will now make sure I take these comments back to Westminster and to the Minister who will be negotiating on behalf of British farmers."