29 APRIL 2021
ICSA Organics chair Fergal Byrne has said excluding Organics Scheme farmers from participating the pilot REAP scheme is a step in the wrong direction. “We cannot continue to send out a message that those doing most for the environment will be at a disadvantage when it comes to allocating environmental supports,” he said.
“This is something that will absolutely have to be addressed in the design of the flagship agri-environment scheme in the new CAP. Organic farmers must be able to reap as much of a reward from these schemes as conventional farmers if we are serious about encouraging farmers to switch to organic methods and playing our part in the EU’s Biodiversity Strategy.”
Mr Byrne said the issue has come to the fore in recent days as farmers have had to make a choice between opting to apply for the REAP scheme or continue with the application process for the Organics Scheme. He reminded those farmers who have opted for the Organics Scheme to ensure their applications are submitted before tomorrow’s (30 April) deadline.